Originally Posted by elfmanvt07
Not saying you're wrong, but I'm willing to bet the English spoke a similar refrain in the early days of the World Cup.
England and the other so-called "Home Nations" (Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland) refused to participate in the World Cup until 1950. Although they were members of FIFA in the early years, they withdrew after World War I and didn't return until after World War II. Wikipedia attributes this to either the British Football Associations refusing to reestablish ties with former enemies or a dispute over the definition of "professional" players used in Olympic Competitions, which I believe is erroneous. I seem to recall from one book I read that the main tension between FIFA and the Home Nations really stemmed from the feeling among the Associations of the Home Nations that, as the "inventors" of modern Association Football, they should hold more sway in how things were run. In fact, until 1950, many in Great Britain viewed the winner of the British Home Championship to be the true "World Champions" and that the National Teams playing in the World Cup were inferior.
In a way, it's very similar to how many Americans view the WBC today. Whether that view will be the same in 50-100 years, I don't know? As baseball grows in popularity in Asia and Europe, I could definitely see a future in which some of these leagues decided to bump up their level of play with backing from Middle Eastern financiers. If they could get over history and politics, I don't think it's crazy to imagine the Japanese, Koreans, and Chinese, with help from Persian Gulf-based backers and Russian Oligarchs, banding together to form an Asian Major League to compete on the level with MLB. Who knows with Europe? Baseball could take off like wildfire or fizzle out. However, based on the experience the Home Nations had in International Soccer, I think it's better for MLB and the US to embrace and encourage the global growth of the game rather than keep to itself and let others take the lead.