10 August 2010


After association football likened itself The Beautiful Game, maybe baseball's 2011 All Star embarrasment-in-the-making should adopt a less showy monicker.

The Invisible Game.

It seems shy and retiring MLB isnt showcasing it's midsummer ... well.... showcase ...this year. Derrick Hall all but confirmed his New York masters nixed his understated plan to plaster every inch of Chase Field and FSN broadcasts with this fang-tastic image.

But even MLB cant stop desperate men from talking. Certainly not Hall's goons, who a mere day after season renewal hikes were mailed, glibly asserted that July's atmosphere will be "no different" than that surrounding Glendale's 2008 Super Bowl. Really?

Set aside for a moment this sheepishly promoted time bomb might not even take place in Arizona. If it does, the scope and utility of festivities will pale next to any Super Bowl run up. Fewer visitors spending far less money, cursing the hottest temperatures of any North American city (instead of reveling in our fantastic Super Bowl weather). Oh, and there could be racially charged political demonstrations heating up our capital's already bubbling asphalt streets. Love the economic boost there.

Hall lobbied tirelessly for this "privilege" of feting MLB's summerfest under the most inhospitable natural (and now, man made) circumstances imaginable. His once healthy PR reputation might be resuscitated, if only a few die from heat stroke or street violence, or if nobody sees it, on what amounts to a ponderously controlled three day TV commercial.

So, what does MLB's timid advertising withdrawal signify at this juncture? It doesnt necessarily mean the game's moving. At the very least, though, it suggests MLB views national attitudes toward Arizona as problematic, and most likely fluid. Otherwise, they would've already left. Curtailing promotion is the early hedge of bigwigs who recognize costs to defiantly staying and costs with ceremoniously pulling out - and they're too afraid, or perhaps wise, to do either right now. They'd prefer developing circumstance make the decision for them.

And it probably will. For now, they are curators of The Invisible Game.

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