In The Cheap Seats
Bobby "Butch" Burney | News-Telegram Sports Editor

May 6, 2004 -- There's no love lost here on the New York Yankees, but at least the Pinstripers are standing their ground on the latest lame-brain idea by Bud "Light" Selig.

Selig, whose resume would not be complete without the title of The Worst Commissioner in the History of Professional Sports, is adding to his legacy of incompetence with the cob-webbed idea of putting Spider-Man webs on the bases during interleague play.

For a $3.6 million paycheck to Major League Baseball, which is the equivalent of 36-cents for the average person, Selig is peddling the integrity of professional baseball to any bidder, who is this case was a comic book character. For 36-cents, would you let a company put their logo on your mailbox?

Selig is a character, but he's more laughing stock than comic book.

The Yankees, though, are at least one team that is resisting Selig. They said they will put webs only on first base and just during batting practice. Not exactly the hard and firm "No" I would expect every MLB team to say to the scheme, but it's a start.

A former used car salesman, Bud Light is pushing this lemon of an idea to the clubs at a price of $50,000 per team. The Rangers raise more than that in one night of parking fees. Why the team would lower itself to this idiocy is beyond reason.

I can't congratulate the Yankees too much, though, because they did wear advertising patches on their uniforms in the ill-conceived season-opening series in Japan.

When the Bad News Bears wore "Chico's Bail Bonds" on the back of their uniforms, it was supposed to be a joke, not a brainstorm.

Of course, this is just all leading to a fast-approaching era where professional athletes in all sports will have the advertising pock-marked appearance of a NASCAR driver.

Along with "This space for rent," needs to be sign, "Integrity for sale."

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The Rangers' Michael Young is having an All-Star year, which is one of the reasons the team has the best record in the American League. But, don't shower general manager John Hart with wondrous praises.

For the previous two years, Hart tried to edge Young out at second base because he thought Young didn't have the offensive firepower to play the position. Of course, Young is leading the league in hits after moving over from second to shortstop -- which has become even more of an offense-oriented position than second base.

Defensively, Young is still one of the best fielders in the league.

Hart, it seems, was wrong again, but he may have finally found his niche this year -- doing nothing while contemplating retirement.

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For all those pundits who say Don Nelson's style of basketball can't win, you're wrong. History says so.

The best teams of all-time were probably the Celtics and Lakers of the late '70s and early-to-mid '80s. They were also the best fast-break teams ever. They pushed the ball upcourt on virtually every possession.

Where Nelson has gone wrong is discarding the importance of role players in his system. Everyone can't score, which is why the Lakers had Michael Cooper and Kurt Rambis, and the Celtics countered with Cedric Maxwell and Dennis Johnson.

The Mavericks have a Rambis-clone in Eduardo Najera and a brute in Danny Fortson. Playing them may cut down some on the team's scoring, but their hustle, defense and rebounding are many times the difference in the game.

The Mavericks need to continue to run the floor, they just need to have some different sneakers doing the running.

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