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11larkin11
08-05-2012, 02:45 AM
http://espn.go.com/olympics/story/_/id/8188711/baseball-softball-merge-bid-2020-olympics


The absence of major league players in the Olympics was a major factor in the IOC's decision to drop baseball, and the issue remains crucial to any chance of reinstatement. Major League Baseball has been unwilling to shut down the season during the Olympics.

"If they don't propose their best athletes it will be difficult," Oswald said. "If they do, then they have a chance just like the others."

I'm sure this has been discussed here before, but what is everyone's opinion on baseball in the olympics? I know most here cannot stand to think of their players leaving to play for another team and risk injury in the middle of the season, but I personally would love to see MLB players in the Olympics. I think players love and would relish being able to play for their countries in a real tournament (not the WBC).

The NHL suspends their season every 4 years for it, and it makes for fantastic watching for the Olympics. I personally think a new commissioner (Bud would never do it) would consider it. For me, I know it would be hard watching a guy like Cueto risking his health to pitch for the DR, but what's a two week break every 4 years, where a guy pitches maybe 3 times. Have it replace the All Star Game those years. But of course, how would home field advantage be determined then?

AtomicDumpling
08-05-2012, 03:09 AM
I am happy baseball is not in the Olympics. Baseball just doesn't lend itself to that kind of competition where single games decide everything. It would just be a big crapshoot that doesn't prove anything anyway.

I think the real reason they dropped baseball from the Olympics was to get a jab in at the USA for invading Iraq and toppling Saddam Hussein from power. That was the biggest story in the news at the time the decision was made to drop baseball and softball, which are perceived worldwide as American sports so they made an easy target. It was political, which is supposed to not happen in the Olympics but we all know politics has strongly affected the Olympics many times.

Baseball is probably the second most popular sport in the world next to soccer. It is hugely popular in North and South America as well as Japan, Korea and Taiwan and is growing in other places. If the International Olympic Committee doesn't feel such a popular sport is worthy of being included in the Olympics like curling, water polo, ski jumping and handball it just makes them look utterly foolish and incompetent.

Yachtzee
08-05-2012, 03:33 AM
I imagine it didn't help baseball as an Olympic sport that MLB was in the midst of a huge steroid scandal when they voted baseball out. At the time players were still against testing too. I wonder how many players would fail the stricter standards for doping required by the Olympics.

RBA
08-05-2012, 03:58 AM
How about American Football? ;)

powersackers
08-05-2012, 05:18 AM
The WBC is good enough for me. Not an Olympics fan in general though.

KronoRed
08-05-2012, 06:56 AM
If it's not a sport the Europeans can win, it's out.

They replaced baseball and softball with Golf and Rugby ;)

jojo
08-05-2012, 08:23 AM
Aren't the Olympics supposed to be about amateur athletes?

Personally, I'm not a huge fan of the Olympics anyway but I'd find a two week tourney less compelling than the regular season.

OldRightHander
08-05-2012, 09:28 AM
Aren't the Olympics supposed to be about amateur athletes?

I would love to see it go back to that, but I don't see it happening.

oneupper
08-05-2012, 09:36 AM
I think the Olympics should eliminate big professional team spectator sports from the lineup.
It's always going to be a mess with the conflicts of interest.
So mens soccer, basketball and ice hockey...bye bye. Baseball can stay out. Play softball if you want to.

The Olympics should be about fencing, gymnastics and curling and other stuff we don't see ALL the time on the tube.

Raisor
08-05-2012, 09:43 AM
Aren't the Olympics supposed to be about amateur athletes?

.

No, and it hasn't been that way for a long long time.

RedFanAlways1966
08-05-2012, 09:46 AM
I would love to see it go back to that, but I don't see it happening.

I assume the pro athletes mean more $$$ in advertising and everything else for the IOC. Allows them to buy more houses/cars/etc. I too have harped on the "it is supposed to be amateurs". At least we do not see ads on olympian athletes clothing (I think?).

Of course... beach volleyball and speed walking are Olympic sports, but not baseball/softball. I guess there is a reason I have not watched too much of this thing in London. I like baseball and football. If only they had the "Summer" Olympics in the winter month of FEB (no baseball or football). lol

redssince75
08-05-2012, 11:19 AM
Baseball is probably the second most popular sport in the world next to soccer.

Basketball would like a word with you.

dougdirt
08-05-2012, 11:27 AM
Oh, so it is about having the best players in the world? Then why is soccer an under 23 Olympic sport?

RedsManRick
08-05-2012, 11:31 AM
Aren't the Olympics supposed to be about amateur athletes?

Personally, I'm not a huge fan of the Olympics anyway but I'd find a two week tourney less compelling than the regular season.

I was thinking about that; then I realized that many of the other sports have what amounts to professionals as well. Think there's a professional swimmer better than Michael Phelps? What's his day jobs? The same could be asked for the gymnasts, runners, etc.

The amateur ship has sailed.

Personally, I'm not a fan of any team sports in the Olympics period.

mth123
08-05-2012, 03:18 PM
For me the the test should be whether or not the Olympics would be the ultimate event of the sport. Figure skating, Swimming, Track and Field, Field Hockey etc all qualify. Baseball, Basketball, Soccer, Hockey and Tennis not so much. Did anyone really think there was anything special about Serena Williams and Maria Sharapova playing in the finals at Wimbeldon? We've seen that, with much more on the line, every year. No reason to take the shine off the other sports to rehash that again IMO. Baseball falls into that category IMO.

REDREAD
08-08-2012, 03:58 PM
If they are going to bring back baseball to the Olympics, I'd rather it be the college all star team like they used to do.

That would be more entertaining for me than watching 2 weeks of basically exhibition games.

I agree with the other poster.. I want to see Cueto pitch for the Reds.. Even if he was American, I'd be less excited watching him pitch for team USA.

It would be fun to watch players that would probably be in the next draft or two, because we don't normally see that. If other countries like Cuba/Japan want to put their pros in, let them..

Big Klu
08-08-2012, 04:13 PM
Oh, so it is about having the best players in the world? Then why is soccer an under 23 Olympic sport?

I didn't know that. Why is soccer U-23 but other team sports (basketball, volleyball, hockey, and theoretically baseball and softball) are not?

westofyou
08-08-2012, 04:16 PM
I didn't know that. Why is soccer U-23 but other team sports (basketball, volleyball, hockey, and theoretically baseball and softball) are not?

Because Soccer is about to start its season in a week, and the myriad of tournaments that involve the pro game eclipse the Olympics and the World Cup totally does

Yachtzee
08-10-2012, 02:04 AM
Because Soccer is about to start its season in a week, and the myriad of tournaments that involve the pro game eclipse the Olympics and the World Cup totally does

Also, the ability to bestow gold medals is insignificant next to the power of the FIFA. I think Sepp Blatter may actually be Darth Vader. I think he actually used that neck pinch move on Bin Hamman and Jack Warner when they tried to challenge his power.

Other sports seek to be included in the Olympics to gain an worldwide platform for their sport. Soccer is already the most popular sport in the world. It's the IOC that has to come begging the soccer powers that be to take part in the Olympics.

cincinnati chili
08-12-2012, 05:00 AM
I think the real reason they dropped baseball from the Olympics was to get a jab in at the USA for invading Iraq and toppling Saddam Hussein from power. That was the biggest story in the news at the time the decision was made to drop baseball and softball,

As a former (short lived) USOC employee, I can assure you this isn't the case. Jacques Rogge has pretty much come out and admitted the biggest reason they killed baseball: MLB wouldn't suspend its season the way the NHL does. Plenty of people in the Olympic movement were in favor of keeping baseball, but not with college and high school players. They wanted the stars. Selig could have been more conciliatory, but he believed (and still does) that the World Baseball Classic will grow the game as much as the Olympics. Ha! (and I'm enough of a baseball junkie to be one of the few who actually like the WBC)

The three other reasons, in order of importance, were the thought that the MLB players union wouldn't allow their players to submit to WADA drug testing (nonsense - they could work that out), that the game didn't have enough worldwide popularity (hogwash.... European team handball -duh!), and that it can be a very expensive sport if it's done in a country where the games don't sell out and where facilities aren't plentiful.

RedlegJake
08-12-2012, 12:40 PM
I'd be for suspending the season every 4 years and sending ML players. I'd think baseball would grow the sport through the Olympics in places like Australia and New Zealand and Europe more than they would any other way.

Countries would really get behind player development and scouting on their own and that alone could be worth multi-millions to baseball in the long haul. We've already seen players from Germany, Holland, Australia and even India at least hit the minor leagues.

China is still a largely untapped market and as cheaply as they can make equipment baseball would be a rather cheap sport for them. Look at the merchandising product dollars the NBA is collecting from China now ( even after the black market goods are considered).

Drug testing shouldn't be an issue for most players anymore and those who decline simply would pass on playing like the NBA players do. I'd think players would consider it an honor and an exciting thing to experience representing the USA in a foreign country (most Olympiads). Star could be pulled from both the majors and the minors and countries could be salted with players that have origins from that nation.

Joey would play for the Canadian team. Bryce Harper the Americans. Donald Lutz the Germans. Aroldis the Americans and rub it in the Cubans face. Players with either parents or grandparents from anther country could be asked to play for that nation if they so chose. Spread the wealth and heighten the competition.

I'd love to see it happen. Every 4th year shorten the season by 8 games or else begin one week earlier and end one week later to compensate.