Rob Manfred: Saving Grace or Saving Face?
In any sport in the US there is a general consensus by fans that the commissioner is there to keep the game moving. Within that context to some that means assuring the safety of the players or making sure the game is interesting to watch but for others it takes on the more cynical meaning of assuring that the cash flow keeps rolling. This week the commissioner of the MLB Rob Manfred, who was once seen as the next big mind in baseball, has been in the spot light trying to fend off questions from reporters about the sign stealing scandal that has rocked baseball. In his pursuit to defend the sport he is charged with leading he has instead brought about the unintended consequence of drawing the ire of its players who feel they have been cheated out of accolades by the Houston Astros a team found by the commissioners own report to have been cheating in the 2017 regular and post season. While Manfred's approval rating before the scandal among fans varies form person to person the results of his efforts haven't really panned out in the way he had hoped. Ultimately the question on the minds of average to die hard fans alike is if Manfred is the person who should be leading baseball into this new digital age that he had once championed as a part of his hiring that ultimately brought about this scandal. I for one feel that Rob Manfred's efforts have done little to affect the outcomes he had hoped would drive baseball forward as a sport that would maintain its place in the hearts of many as an American past time. To me in this day and age society is far to what have you done for me lately to have this sort of incident driven by the changes Manfred implemented to not at least taint his place in history if not force him to resign. Add to that the multitude of players that have come out incensed at this situation and their commissioner to the extent that I don't see a path forward to repair this. Many have suggested that the commissioner should strip the title if he can't discipline the players but at this point not only does that seem unlikely but the actions of Manfred to say players will be suspended if Astros players are hit by a pitch only further the divide to that end. As a baseball fan I hope things can move forward in some way but to me the only way that happens is without Robe Manfred.
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