Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Fall Classic? '94 Might Be a Classic Fall

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Fall Classic? '94 Might Be a Classic Fall

Article excerpt

If big-league baseball owners and players have been trying to scare me, I'm afraid now that the players have gone on strike, they'll be away from the ballpark for a long, long time.

For the moment, save the wisecracks. Stop thinking that the Cardinals have played as though they've been on strike several times this summer. For just a minute, don't repeat the mantra that "the players make too much money, the owners make too much money, they're all greedy bums, so good riddance."

Today, consider this: It's a Friday in August in America, and no one will play a major-league baseball game.

And this: There will be no big-league ball in America in September.

And this: There will be no big-league ball in America in October. No playoffs.

No World Series.

They have played the World Series every year since 1905. Countries fought "The War To End All Wars," yet the World Series went on. Countries staged World War II, and still baseball played for its championship. A gambling scandal rocked the game to its foundation, a major earthquake did the same to Candlestick Park, and the Series went on.

But this year, this will be different.

We have read things such as these:

From players union chief Donald Fehr: "If the owners are waiting for our proposal on a salary cap, they're never going to see it. It doesn't arrive until the year 2078."

From powerful White Sox owner Jerry Reinsdorf: "You do it by taking a position and telling them they're not going to play unless we make a deal, and being prepared not to play one or two years if you have to."

From Rockies catcher Joe Girardi: "I think we're much more prepared and far better off than they were in 1985. The salaries are higher, and the guys have put much more money away."

Watching players pursue records has been fun. Seeing teams such as Cleveland and Montreal atop the standings has been interesting.

But there's sadness on the flip side: Baseball at its best will disappear, with scant indication it will return this year.

Fans could hope the players or owners run out of money and need their jobs back. And the owners could feel queasy at the prospect of losing about $140 million in postseason television money. …

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