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Marvin Miller memorialized last night

Jan 22, 2013, 8:26 AM EST

Marvin Miller

There was a memorial service held for the late Marvin Miller last night. Dozens of former players, league officials, union officials and friends of the former MLBPA leader were on hand, and the message was clear: appreciate what Marvin Miller did for the players, for the game and, man oh man, put him in the Hall of Fame.

The quote of the day came from Rusty Staub:

“Every time somebody signs one of these wonderful contracts, and there are so many of them out there, I think before they get the first check they should have to write an essay on Marvin Miller.”

Yup.

Miller, passed over five times for the Hall of Fame, will once again be on the Veteran’s Committee ballot this December. My guess is that he’ll make it this time, having fallen one vote short in 2010.

  1. historiophiliac - Jan 22, 2013 at 9:47 AM

    It’s pretty sad the vets haven’t acknowledged him, as it would be logical that they would know best about his work. Hopefully, they’ll induct him the next time around.

  2. Chris Fiorentino - Jan 22, 2013 at 11:35 AM

    What exactly did Marvin Miller do “for the game of baseball”? I have read literally 50 different stories about the guy, and from everything I have read, his biggest impact was getting rid of the slavish reserve clause for the players, negotiating the first CBA with the owners, and getting the minimum salary raised up to around $400,000 by the time he left office in 1982. Great. all great things for the players and their rights. But again…what does any of that have to do with “the game of baseball”? Are you trying to tell me that baseball wouldn’t be where it is today without owners being “fair” to players? I highly doubt that.

    Let’s take a look at someone in another sport who did a lot for the “game of football”…Pete Rozelle. He was the one who fought for sharing TV rights and he made the NFL what it is today…a far surperior national sport than baseball. Football came out of nowhere to overtake “America’s Pastime”, which is what it was throughout the 60, 70s and 80s. If Miller was so into helping the “game of baseball” why didn’t he fight for the equality of a team like the Royals with a team like the Yankees?

    So sure…put him in the Hall of Fame for everything he did for the players and their rights. But let’s not make him out to be this great person who did things for “the game of baseball”. As far as I can tell, he didn’t do squat for the “game of baseball”.

    • lunatic96 - Jan 22, 2013 at 1:29 PM

      It seems pretty obvious that paying baseball players enough that they could concentrate on just playing baseball would do enough to raise the quality of competition to qualify Marvin Miller for the HoF even if we were just using the ridiculous “game of baseball” qualifications that you seem to be using.

      • Chris Fiorentino - Jan 23, 2013 at 7:16 AM

        I see…so the competition must have just been awful for guys before Miller got involved, right? Guys like Cobb, Ruth, Gehrig, DiMaggio, Teddy Ballgame, Musial, Cy Young, Walter Johnson, etc, etc. Speaking of “ridiculous” LOL.

  3. Old Gator - Jan 22, 2013 at 5:34 PM

    Did Marvin Miller ever take a urine test? If not, there’s no way to prove that he wasn’t on steroids. I’d weigh a doubt against a certainty and leave him off my ballot for that. But don’t worry – we’ll leave him his good name anyway.

  4. bigharold - Jan 22, 2013 at 8:23 PM

    “… put him in the Hall of Fame.”

    Why? Miller never was employed by a MLB team nor did he ever play so why exactly should he go into the MLB HOF?

    If there was a labor leaders HoF or an American Union leaders Hof he should have his own wing, .. but he doesn’t deserve induction to the MLB HoF. And, remember he didn’t get the players free agency, he lost the reserve clause suit. The owners caved on the reserve clause for the same reason MLPA caved on drug testing, .. fear of congressional action. Only in 1970 the owners were afraid they’d lose their anti-trust exemption. In 2003 the MLPA was afraid that congress would hold hearing, due to the widespread negative press associated with PEDs, baseball and several high profile suicides by teenagers, that would result in a Federally mandate drug testing program that would be far more effective catching abusers as well as possible punishments. It wasn’t like all the sudden the MLPA leaders got religion and decided to protect players from each other as well as protect the players from themselves.

    Not doubt Miller had a significant impact on on baseball but he’s not on the inside of the game. If you are going to induct Miller you need to be ready to induct Scott Boras when he retires too, as well as other highly successful agents. Boras’ impact might not be as broad but as agents go he’s this generation’s Ty Cobb. A very successful SOB that puts up the numbers.

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