Ben Lindbergh and Meg Rowley discuss Rob Manfred’s rapid flip-flop from expressing 100 percent confidence about an MLB season starting to expressing a lack of confidence in an MLB season starting, his ultimatum to the union, how Manfred has floundered at a pivotal time and how that failure effects his future, how some owners’ reluctance to start the season is hurting themselves and the sport, how COVID complicates plans to play, the worst-case scenario for the league, the odds of a season, and more. Then they answer listener emails about how to support players while still supporting teams, expanding the division series, the impact of future NBA seasons overlapping longer with MLB’s, whether players could form their own league, teams’ incentive to win in 2020, and whether and why pulled homers are the most aesthetically pleasing, plus Stat Blasts about players with the least playing time by number of years of service time and an unsurpassed feat by Mark Buehrle.
Audio intro: Courtney Barnett, "Crippling Self-Doubt and a General Lack of Confidence"
Audio outro: Drive-By Truckers, "Grievance Merchants"
Link to The Athletic on the latest in MLB’s big dispute
Link to Craig Edwards on Manfred’s latest comments
Link to Jeff Passan on Manfred
Link to Ken Rosenthal on Manfred
Link to Stat Blast song cover by John Choiniere and Lucas Apostoleris
Link to Lucas’s debut album
Link to service time spreadsheet
Link to starters with most games facing the minimum
Link to Rany on Buehrle