Quick Hits: Dodgers, Buxton, Cohen

It was on this day in 1921 that Commissioner Kenesaw Mountain Landis imposed lifetime bans from baseball on eight members of the 1919 White Sox for their alleged role in throwing that year's World Series.  The most famous of the eight "Black Sox" is one of the game's all-time greats, Shoeless Joe Jackson, whose participation in the game-fixing scandal has been disputed for years (he hit .375/.394/.563 in the eight Series games).

Some news as we wrap up a busy Monday in the majors…

  • Major League Baseball did not invite real estate developer Alan Casden to a meeting of competing groups bidding to buy the Dodgers, effectively removing Casden from the process, reports Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times.  Casden's rejection means that the list of potential new Dodgers ownership groups has been narrowed to six.
  • The Orioles held a workout for high school outfielder Byron Buxton, reports Peter Schmuck of the Baltimore Sun.  Buxton is projected to be one of the top picks in this summer's amateur draft and could be taken by the O's with the fourth overall pick, though Schmuck says "there's a lot of buzz" that the Mariners could draft Buxton third overall.  According to Baseball America's Conor Glassey, Buxton's "explosive athleticism and five-tool potential has already led some scouts to compare [him] to a hybrid of the Upton brothers."
  • Steve Cohen is "the most important man in Major League Baseball right now," writes Mike Ozanian of Forbes Magazine, for offering to buy partial ownership of the financially-struggling Mets and for his ability to present a "simple" bid to buy the Dodgers.


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24 Comments on "Quick Hits: Dodgers, Buxton, Cohen"


Lunchbox45
3 years 5 months ago

I’m extremely tempted to comment on the buxton comparison but not sure if I want to go there

Rabbitov
3 years 5 months ago

please do it!

Lunchbox45
3 years 5 months ago

I’m just curious if a black prospect was ever not compared to a black player..

so far he’s been compared to austin jackson and the upton brothers.  Why not a  jacoby ellsbury or gardner comparison?

Rabbitov
3 years 5 months ago

Agreed, but even worst are NFL Quarterbacks.  Have you ever heard a black quarterback compared to a white one?  Its really strange how thought processes are so compartmentalized despite the progress the nation has made on equality.

Lunchbox45
3 years 5 months ago

exactly! and yes i’ve noticed that as well…

I get it sometimes when its more of a cultural difference, usually Russian hockey players are this way or Swedish players that. Which makes sense because they learn the same game a different way, so when they come over to North America it makes sense.

But for players coming out of the states, they play on the same team, with the same coaches, learn the game the same way. Its ridiculous to compare the prospect to the closest player of the same colour..

When I read Buxton’s scouting report and watch his tapes, I see Justin Upton with more speed and BJ Upton with more power… instead of saying hybrid Upton, could they not have said Ellsbury?

Infield Fly
3 years 5 months ago

Nice commentary, guys (that means you too @Rabbitov:disqus). This type of thing has bugged me for years and it’s good to see that someone else notices.

I would also add latinos to this phenomenon. With a plethora of great players of all backgrounds who have risen to the Bigs in years past, why does every talented Puerto Rican player have to be compared to Roberto Clemente, every promising Dominican pitcher have to be compared to Juan Marichal, and so on? Why does their appraisal need to include something that subtly says “Well, these guys are great but they’re not white”?

Similarly, how long is it going to be until so-called “professional” sports writers and analysts acknowledge to themselves that it’s the talent, not the skin tone or nationality that makes the player what he is? :-/

Juuuust wondering…

3 years 5 months ago

It has to be all psychological. People must just naturally compare players because they have similar abilities but also look similar, making for an even greater comparison.

As you may have guessed, Im a huge soccer fan as well. This happens with nationality too. A young promising English player will ALWAYS have comparisons to older English players. Same with every other country.

I guess it just makes it that much easier for people to draw comparisons if both players happen to be the same skin color because that just another thing that they have in common along with everything else.

Lunchbox45
3 years 5 months ago

yah but in that situation its different because soccer is such a diverse sport. If you grow up in England you are going to learn to play soccer an entirely different way then if you grew up in Italy or Brazil.

So it only makes sense to compare players from the same nation. Same goes for hockey.. If you were born and raised in Russia you are going to learn, play and think the game differently than if you were born and raised in the states.

Infield Fly
3 years 5 months ago

I see what you’re saying but in evaluating performance and skill, nationality, culture,
skin – whatever – they’re all irrelevant. So if analysts and writers are defaulting to focusing on stuff like that when making comparisons between players because it’s “easy,” then that’s a pretty unprofessional standard of analysis.

(PS: Not trying to take a shot at you here. I’m just sick of this stuff and really feel like it’s time to stop giving it a pass).

Rabbitov
3 years 5 months ago

I’m a soccer fan every 4 years :-). 

3 years 5 months ago

I modestly respect that! 

melonis_rex
3 years 5 months ago

Also– the descriptors used and qualities emphasized in players of different races is interesting:  

e.g. “grinder,” “scrappy,” ” always gets his uniform dirty” almost always refers to a white player. 

johnsilver
3 years 5 months ago

I wouldn’t go that far now.. Crisp is known as “scrappy”, “grinder” and always goes the extra mile to win at all costs.

CreativeMace
3 years 5 months ago

I’ve heard RGIII compared to Steve Young, but that’s the only comparison I can come up with.

Rabbitov
3 years 5 months ago

Good call on that one.  Still, I’ve heard more Vick descriptions with him than I can count, and I just don’t see it.  

pastlives
3 years 5 months ago

wow i never knew how well shoeless joe did in that series that consequently got him banned from baseball. how do you possibly prove that someone who hit 375/.394/.563 was intentionally doing poorly?

CubbieBlueHoosier
3 years 5 months ago

Unfortunately he accepted money and admitted to not trying as hard as he could have.

start_wearing_purple
start_wearing_purple
3 years 5 months ago

Well he was one of the guys who confessed and accepted money. But as I recall Landis also banned everyone who definitely knew that the Series was being thrown. People have been arguing for years that Buck Weaver should never have been banned since there’s no proof on him at all.

Redsox33
3 years 5 months ago

The Red Sox will draft Buxton and Joe did his best in that series.

3 years 5 months ago

Good sarcasm

Redsox33
3 years 5 months ago

I was being serious

jed_hoyer
3 years 5 months ago

i’ll bet if you asked the hispanic players they would compare themselves to other Hispanic players. same with blacks

Lunchbox45
3 years 5 months ago

 most players wish they could not try their way to a .563 slugging percentage

Gumby65
3 years 5 months ago

 Line has been cast…. good luck on getting a bite sir.