Posted Under: Johanna's View
I met Marvin Miller a few years ago when he was speaking at NYU’s law school. He spoke about a number of current issues in baseball and a bit about the formation of a union. He was upset, at the time, that the Player’s Union had given in to any kind of testing- he thought that was an invasion of privacy that the player’s didn’t need. He was feisty, even at the age of 90 years old.
Mr. Miller was instrumental in the formation of a union, but also in escalating the business of all sport- not just baseball. And while as fans we may feel pushed aside because of these millionaire athletes, we should also understand that the game is better because of the money that is available in it. Yes, steroids still threaten the integrity. But athletes today take better care of themselves, they hone their skills more, and they compete to stay in the game as long as possible. Think what Babe Ruth might have been able to do if he needed to stay in shape. Money has changed the game, and perhaps not all for the good. But, it has in some ways made it better.
And while there are still owners who seem to hoard their money instead of improving their team, today their is pressure on the league not to allow that to happen. The more competitive each team is, the greater the value of each franchise. And all of that is because Marvin Miller taught a few players that they deserved their own piece of the pie.
Thank you Marvin Miller.
Now for a more complete obit, here is Richard Sandomir of the New York Times.