MOSS READY TO LAUNCH NEW BASEBALL LEAGUE ON OCTOBER 19
Agent Dick Moss plans to announce the formation of a new
baseball league on October 19 that he says will be operational
this April. A similar project by Moss and NYC attorney David
LeFevre fell apart in '89-90. But in the wake of the strike,
Moss now says: "It's a very real thing. We have some very
substantial people involved." Moss said the league would be
comprised of 10-12 teams and play in cities "spurned" by MLB,
including Buffalo, Mexico City, Tampa and Vancouver, as well as
some smaller stadiums in MLB cities (Joel Sherman, N.Y. POST,
WILL MLBPA'S TRUST IN CONGRESS PAY OFF? Red Sox CEO John
Harrington, who originally set November 1 as a deadline for
settlement, now sees December as "realistic" given the recent
House hearings on MLB's antitrust exemption. Harrington: "It's
a major distraction and I hope the players aren't thinking they'd
like to wait until January where they might think a ruling would
be favorable for them" (Nick Cafardo, BOSTON GLOBE, 9/25). After
seeing a copy of the bill to do away with the exemption, Braves
President Stan Kasten said the players are "trying to become a
special class of citizen. They are not asking for a level
playing field. This is an outrage." Kasten stressed that, in
the absence of an exemption, a court could not force the game
back on the field (I.J. Rosenberg, ATLANTA CONSTITUTION, 9/24).
In Richmond, Paul Woody writes on the players' promise to return
to work and fight the issue out in court should the exemption be
lifted: "That's a bluff worth calling" (RICHMOND TIMES-DISPATCH,
9/25). Another paper's editorial board joins the players' cause.
From Sunday's CINCINNATI ENQUIRER: "[The exemption] is as
unsporting as a corked bat. It should be given the thumb"
(ENQUIRER, 9/25). In Tampa, Neil Cote sees an upside for the
owners in losing the exemption: "It would allow teams even
greater latitude to shake down their cities. How? By adding
teeth to their threats to move" (TAMPA TRIBUNE, 9/26).
BIG CITY, SMALL MEETING: Cal Ripken, Dave Winfield and
Eddie Murray were among 22 players from 14 teams that attended
the third of seven informational meetings planned by the MLBPA.
Ripken, asked about the possibility of games played by
replacement players ending his streak: "If replacement players
play, it is not major-league baseball and I won't be playing"
(Joel Sherman, N.Y. POST, 9/24). MLBPA Exec Dir Don Fehr "said
he was not surprised at the low turnout, since most of the
players live in other parts of the country." Fehr's "caravan"
visits four other cities this week (Larry Whiteside, BOSTON
STRIKING THOUGHTS: The Cardinal's "fan appreciation day"
open house at Busch Stadium drew 50,000 fans Sunday (ST. LOUIS
POST-DISPATCH, 9/26)....Former Commissioner Bowie Kuhn suggests
the trio that negotiated the Haitian settlement (Carter, Powell,
Nunn) as baseball mediators (N.Y. TIMES, 9/25)....Agent Tony
Attanasio says Japan is a "very real" option for many players
should the strike continue into '95 (Jayson Stark, PHILADELPHIA
INQUIRER, 9/25)....Orioles Owner Peter Angelos and Fehr had lunch
Saturday afternoon. Restaurant proprietor Naz Velleggia: "They
were very quiet and congenial and never raised their voices" (Tom
Keegan, Baltimore SUN, 9/25)....Bill Madden suggest that former
MSG President Bob Gutkowski would be a better choice for
Commissioner than retiring George Mitchell. "He knows the TV
business inside and out with the MSG Network at the top of his
resume. Shrewd, dynamic, personable ... but most important of
all, Gutkowski made the Garden a fan-friendly place" (N.Y. DAILY