From the annals of chutzpah, here’s Bud Selig commenting yesterday on the Oakland A’s San Jose problem and the potential dispute with the Giants over territorial rights:
“I’m always hopeful when there are debates amongst clubs, I try to lead teams in a direction of solving their problems themselves,” Selig said. “However, this group has an interesting comment whenever they get in trouble: ‘That’s why you’re here, Commissioner.’ That’s what they tell me. I don’t know that that’s a particularly good answer …
Hahaha, that’s funny, see. Because, I seem to remember Bud Selig and Major League Baseball setting up a TASK FORCE FOR THE SPECIFIC PURPOSE OF FIGURING THIS OUT THREE YEARS AGO. A task force that has yet to produce a single report, suggestion or opinion. They haven’t even cleared their throats once.
I knows it’s rather nuts to assume that when Major League Baseball says it’s going to study something and come up with a potential solution that it will, you know, actually do that, but I guess I’m just unreasonable that way.
But hey, if I’m running the A’s I take Bud’s suggestion and solve this problem myself. I purchase the land in San Jose and start building a stadium and dare Selig, the Giants and whoever else wants to do so to sue me to stop it. I bet then we’d see how quickly they move when forced to, as opposed to sitting around and waiting for their problems to go away.
When he’s not throwing baseballs, Twins pitcher Trevor May is an active gamer. He streams on Twitch, a very popular video game streaming site, fairly regularly and now he’s officially on an eSports team. Luminosity Gaming announced the organization added May last Friday. It appears he’ll be streaming and commentating on Overwatch, a multiplayer first-person shooter made by Blizzard Entertainment.
May is the only current athlete to be an active member of an eSports team. Former NBA player Rick Fox owns Echo Fox, an eSports team that sports players in games including League of Legends, Super Smash Bros. Melee, Super Smash Bros. for Wii U, Street Fighter V, Marvel vs. Capcom 3, Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, and Mortal Kombat X. Jazz forward Gordon Hayward is also a known advocate of eSports.
The NBA in particular has been very active on the eSports front. Kings co-owners Andy Miller and Mark Mastrov launched NRG eSports in November 2015. Shortly thereafter, Grizzlies co-owner Stephen Kaplan invested in the Immortals eSports team. Almost a year later, the 76ers acquired controlling stakes in Team Dignitas and Team Apex. The same month, the Wizards’ and Warriors’ owners launched a group called Axiomatic, which purchased a controlling stake in Team Liquid, a long-time Starcraft: Brood War website which has since branched out into other games. And also in September 2016, Celtics forward Jonas Jerebko bought team Renegades, moving them to a group house in Detroit. In December 2016, the Bucks submitted a deal to Riot Games in order to purchase Cloud9’s Challenger league spot for $2.5 million. The Rockets that month hired someone specifically for eSports development, focusing on strategy and investment. Last month, the Heat acquired a controlling stake in team Misfits.
Once an afterthought, eSports has grown considerably in recent years and now it should be considered a competitor to traditional sports. League of Legends, in particular, is quite popular, reaching nearly 15 million concurrent viewers at its peak in the most recent League of Legends World Championship. That championship featured a prize purse of $6.7 million with $2 million of it being split among winner SK Telecom T1’s members.
The Orioles have re-signed outfielder Michael Bourn to a minor league contract with an invitation to major league camp, MASN’s Roch Kubatko reports.
Bourn, 34, joined the Orioles last year in a trade from the Diamondbacks on August 31. Though he compiled a meager .669 OPS with the Diamondbacks, Bourn hit a solid .283/.358/.435 in 55 plate appearances with the O’s through the end of the season.
Bourn, a non-roster invitee to camp, will try to play his way onto the Orioles’ 25-man roster. If he does make the roster, Bourn will receive a $2 million salary, Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports points out.