Cal Ripken tells Bloomberg that the managing itch is getting stronger, and as the years go by he’s more and more likely to scratch it.
The Hall of Famer, who retired in 2001 after 21 years with the Orioles, has said before that he was interested in managing, but wanted to wait until his kids had grown up and left home. Well, that time is coming, as his daughter Rachel is in college and his son Ryan is a sophomore in high school.
“I valued that time frame and I wanted to be there, and I’m starting to think about it a little more now,” Ripken said in an interview with Bloomberg Radio’s “Bloomberg Surveillance.” “When my boy goes off to college, if there’s a time to come back to the game, maybe that’s the time.”
I’m not surprised Ripken would like to get back into the game, and it’s admirable that he is waiting until his kids are grown. It seems like a lot of ballplayers, after giving the “I want to spend more time with my family” speech, last about a year before going stir crazy.
What I’m worried about, however, is what Cal will do the first time one of his players asks to take a day off.
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Minor League Baseball announced on Wednesday that, for the 14th consecutive season, the league has eclipsed 40 million in total attendance. 20 teams set single-game attendance records and seven teams set franchise records for single-game attendance in their current parks.
ESPN’s Keith Law, who has been covering the minor leagues for quite a while, did the math:
Minor League Baseball president and CEO Pat O’Conner, whose most prominent stint in the public eye involved him disingenuously justifying the underpaying of his players, said, “Minor League Baseball continues to be the best entertainment value in sports, and these numbers support that. For us to top 40 million fans for the 14th consecutive season despite the weather challenges our teams faced in April and May is a testament to the continued support of our loyal fan bases and the creative promotions and hard work done by all of our teams across the country.”
Major and Minor League Baseball are quite happy to make money hand over fist on the backs of their players, but are too cheap to pay them adequately for their labor.