Baseball legend Richard “Goose” Gossage criticized the state of Major League Baseball this week, complaining it appears as if the organization is being run by “Democrats.”
The fiery 68-year-old former New York Yankee blasted the game he played for 22 years in a phone interview with The Tampa Bay Times.
“I don’t even recognize this game that they’re playing. I really don’t. You get paid all this money for doing less, doing half,’’ Gossage said.
The former player then criticized baseball’s obsession with statistics over winning games.
“These [stat-driven] workouts are all eyewash. It’s a bunch of bulls—,” he said. “It’s like the Democrats are running baseball.’’
“They’re trying to control something that is uncontrollable. And they’re taking all the beauty out of the game,’’ the retired relief pitcher added.
Gossage added that he no longer watches Major League Baseball.
“I don’t even watch the game anymore,’’ he said said. “It breaks my heart that I can’t sit down and watch nine innings of baseball because it’s not the game I was brought up playing and respecting and loving. The strategy of the game — where do we start talking about the differences? It’s all become so computerized.’’
Gossage’s complaints about the statistics revolution in baseball are shared by many other fans of the game.
As baseball enthusiast and sociologist Dr. Edwin Amenta wrote in a 2019 article published in The Conversation, “In the new millennium, the statistical revolution forced baseball to double down on numbers.”
Amenta added the emphasis on stats has made games unbearably long, writing “the statistical turn has changed how the game is played – and in far from fan-friendly ways.”
The average MLB game in 2019 lasted three hours and ten minutes, according to Baseball Reference.
By comparison, in 1978, when Gossage helped the Yankees win the World Series, the average game lasted only two hours and thirty minutes.
Gossage also referenced the current Houston Astros sign-stealing scandal and baseball’s steroid problem in his interview with The Times.
“Guys used to steal signs all the time. Robin Yount and Paul Molitor were a couple of the best at stealing signs from second base, and [catcher Thurman Munson] comes out one day and says, ‘I think they’re stealing our signs.’ I said, ‘Oh, OK.’ Munson runs back, he didn’t even say anything, we knew what to do,” he said.
“[Munson] called a breaking ball and I threw a fastball under Robin Yount’s chin, and I think he saw his life flash before his eyes.”
On players using steroids, he complained, “There already are steroid guys in the Hall of Fame. … Anything goes these days.”
Gossage has been highly critical of the current state baseball in recent years. In 2016, the former Yankee faced a backlash after he ripped into Toronto Blue Jays slugger Jose Bautista for his famous bat flip after hitting a home run in the 2015 playoffs.
“Bautista is a f—ing disgrace to the game,” Gossage told ESPN.
“He’s embarrassing to all the Latin players, whoever played before him. Throwing his bat and acting like a fool.”
“I was passed the torch a certain way to act. Flipping the bat was not part of it,” Gossage later explained, according to MLB.com.
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