WBC Five Cuts: Korea-Venezuela
LOS ANGELES --
"No," he said. "I don't see how that's possible."
Asked specifically about somehow hooking the WBC to the All-Star Game, Selig said, "July dates are the best dates for the [major league] clubs. The clubs are not going to give up extra dates [in July] and they shouldn't. There is no [other] viable time and it's too good of an opportunity internationally."
Hopefully Selig's statement puts a merciful end to any talk of turning Major League baseball stadiums dark when kids are out of school. Get used to it folks: there is no perfect time to play a tournament with players from all over the world, but March is the best option. It will be in March in 2013, March in 2017 and on and on.
The WBC, of course, loves Korea and Japan. They are the Yankees and Red Sox of international baseball. Both clubs generate huge international broadcast fees and ticket sales. Korea, in fact, is a bigger draw at Dodger Stadium than the United States. Korea's game Saturday night against Venezuela drew 43,378 fans -- more than is expected Sunday for the United States-Japan game. Asked to name the dream finals matchup for Monday, one baseball official said, "For revenues? Japan-Korea -- though it would be good for the U.S. to get there."
Well, no. WBC sources said there was no way Cuba could have been placed in the other bracket -- not with the second round held in Miami. The event risked massive protests and turning a baseball goodwill event into a political inferno by having Cuba play in Miami.
And there was this ominous bit of second-guessing from Castro; "I should point out that the leadership of the team in San Diego was very poor." Not a good time to be
"I need to work on some of them," Selig admitted. "There is a time in life to put the bests interests of the game ahead of your provincial, self-interests."