LABJ FORUM: Back in the Game

Much to the relief of baseball fans nationwide, Major League Baseball owners and players reached agreement on a new four-year labor deal last month, allowing the remainder of the season and the World Series to go on as scheduled. Lingering bitterness aside, local fans are being treated to one of the most exciting pennant races in nearly a decade. Both the Dodgers and Angels are playing well and very much alive in their respective league races. So the Business Journal asks: Do you plan to follow the pennant races in baseball this year?

Michael Friedman
Executive Vice President
Airstar Space Lighting

Nope. I did a long time ago, but (Major League Baseball) lost me a long time ago. There's too many players moving around and the faces are always changing. It's not like you're rooting for your own guys anymore. The Dodgers could be in the World Series and I probably still wouldn't be interested in watching.



Richard Stambul
Attorney
Law Office of Richard A. Stambul

No. What makes me angry is that a guy can't take his kids to the game and sit out in the centerfield bleachers for less than $100. I got more excitement going to Jackie Robinson Stadium and seeing UCLA play. That's real baseball to me. You can yell at the pitcher and he can hear you.



Joyce Moore
Dean of Academic Affairs
Los Angeles City College

I care about how it affects the economy and my nephew follows it, so I care for those reasons. I don't follow baseball all that much, but I do have an opinion. I am always a little concerned about greed. It seems the athletes lose touch with how difficult it is for people to attend the games. On the other hand, I don't think the owners should get all the money.

Sean T. Haley
President
Zyrex Inc.

I'm not the biggest baseball fan, and even though (the labor dispute) has been resolved it still sort of bothers me. I think the players are being greedy. What happened to seven dollar tickets at Dodger Stadium? The strike rubs me the wrong way, yes. Will it stop me from watching some of the games? No.



Susanne Trimbath
Research Economist, Capital Studies Group
The Milken Institute

I don't plan to follow the pennant races this year. I missed the 1993 World Series because I was working in Russia and I was so disappointed when they canceled the World Series and went on strike in 1994 that I have not been able to watch the thing since. I am a big sports fan, but, I don't know I just can't get behind it.



Peter Baxter
Co-founder, President
Slamdance Film Festival

Yeah, absolutely. It's kind of sweet and sour. You have improved performances by (local) teams, which is unfortunately tinged with the sport's diminishing national appeal. Baseball needs to understand that it's not in the important position it once was for fans. But it's like the Lakers, when the team is doing well you're going to get renewed interest.

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