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The Clown Commissioner; A Few Good Men; Big FB Recruiting Coup for Stanford

Baseball writers and national columnists have been piling on MLB commissioner Rob Manfred this week.

With good reason.

Manfred held forth on the Oakland A's impending move to Las Vegas at a press conference Thursday night and made a number of statements that were inaccurate, self-serving, and downright dishonest.

You might have thought he was speaking from Mar-a-Lago.

Manfred works for the owners of the 30 major league teams. Never forget that. He will say whatever he thinks the owners want him to say. He will defend them at the expense of players and fans. He is, for all intents and purposes, their puppet.

In Oakland's case, he and A's owner John Fisher have worked hard to create and sustain the myths that Fisher is a responsible owner, Oakland fans do not support their team, and the city is not trying to build a new stadium.

With a straight face, Manfred said he felt sorry for the A's fans and doesn't like the outcome (the A's leaving Oakland for Las Vegas). He placed the blame squarely on the city of Oakland, asking "What is it that Oakland was prepared to do? There is no Oakland offer, OK? They never got to a point where they had a plan to build a stadium at any site. The community has to provide support. At some point, you come to the realization it's just not going to happen."

Where to start...

First off, he doesn't feel sorry about the outcome. He helped orchestrate it by enabling Fisher, mocking the A's fans, lying about the city's commitment to the team, and offering to waive its relocation fee.

On Tuesday A's fans held a reverse boycott and about 30,000 fans showed up to prove to Manfred and his cronies that the team had a loyal following. But Manfred pooh-poed the turnout, saying it was "almost an average MLB crowd in the facility for one night."

Obviously, the reason fans haven't shown up in larger numbers the last few years is that Fisher has sabotaged the team and betrayed his fans. His payroll is the lowest in baseball, and he has consistently traded away his best players. It got to the point where fans were afraid to buy any star player's jersey, because they knew he wouldn't be around very long.

His comments about the lack of an Oakland offer and plans to build a stadium were blatant lies.

The city was working hard to satisfy the team's ever-changing demands and make its ill-conceived Howard Terminal proposal a reality. A number of permitting hurdles had been cleared and major financing had been secured. In fact, the A's and city officials were meeting daily and a final deal was close to being completed.

But Fisher and team president Duplicitous Dave Kaval, after pledging and promoting the falsehood that they were "rooted in Oakland," were pursuing "parallel paths" in Oakland and Las Vegas, with an emphasis on Las Vegas.

Manfred was a key player in their charade.

He is a shameless fool.

A Few Good Men: On the other end of the spectrum from Rob Manfred are two ex-managers of the San Francisco Giants--Dusty Baker and Bruce Bochy.

After successful stints with the Giants, Cubs, Reds and Nationals, Baker finally got his World Series championship last year with the Houston Astros. Bochy, owner of three World Series rings from his Giants' 2010, '12 and '14 teams, is working wonders with the Texas Rangers. His team has the third best record in baseball and actually leads Baker's Astros in the standings by 5 1/2 games.

They are two of the finest people in the game.

Big Get for Stanford Football: Stanford's new football coach Troy Taylor is quickly establishing his recruiting chops. Stanford's 2024 class was already rated No. 10 or 11 nationally. But the Cardinal will move up after landing a commitment yesterday from one of the top quarterback recruits in the country, Elijah Brown from powerhouse Mater Dei in Southern California, the same school that produced Bryce Young and Matt Leinart.

Brown is ranked the No. 3 quarterback nationally and No. 33 overall in next year's 247 rankings. He has started four years at Mater Dei, which is quite an accomplishment, and has lost only one game in his career.

During his junior season in 2022 Brown threw for 2,785 yards and 31 touchdowns with a 68% completion rate. He was also recruited by Alabama, UCLA, Tennessee, Penn State and USC.


Gary Cavalli - Bowl and League co-founder, author, speaker 

Gary Cavalli, the former Sports Information Director and Associate Athletic Director at Stanford University, was co-founder and executive director of the college football bowl game played in the Bay Area, and previously was co-founder and President of the American Basketball League.

Get in touch//@cavalli49//

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