BOB:  Rangers sale has a hiccup

Creditors try to impede Rangers sale

Last week, a big deal was made about a meeting between the prospective owners of the Texas Rangers and the creditors for Tom Hicks, the current owner of the Rangers. There was news that the creditors might be able to hold up a sale because they were looking for more money but just as big of a deal was made about the fact that Chuck Greenberg, who leads the group that’s buying the Rangers, and Nolan Ryan, the team president weren’t going to be in attendance. This fact meant the meeting wasn’t important enough for the leaders of the group to attend the discussion.

When it came down to it, it appears to be just posturing. BizofBaseball reported that the meeting did not yield anything that would be considered a deal killer and that it just looks like the creditors were posturing to get much out of the deal as they possibly can.

“Sabermetrics” trademark application withdrawn

Back in January, a fight ensued between the Society of American Baseball Research (SABR) and a company called Deep Focus, which turns out to be a marketing agency. Deep Focus had filed an application to trademark the term “Sabermetrics.” I haven’t gotten my hands on the patent application, but when this first came out in the news, the outcry was that Deep Focus was just trying capitalize on a term that’s been around for years.

Earlier this week, Deep Focus agreed to withdraw the application. If you give them the benefit of the doubt, then you believe their reason for backing off. They claim that they had come up with “Sabermetrics” as a term to describe their approach to evaluating engagement with social media. It doesn’t look like they have many baseball fans (nor did they Google the term) because they would have found that the word has been used for years. The good news is, sabermetrics is a word that’s in the public domain so we can continue to use it as we please.

Arizona proposes Cactus League ticket surcharge to keep Cubs in Mesa

The Chicago Cubs have agreed to continue to use Mesa, Ariz. as their spring training home for the foreseeable future with one catch. The state of Arizona is trying to institute a new ticket charge that would essentially fund the Cubs’ new $84 million spring training home. The Chicago White Sox and Arizona Diamondbacks are the first two teams to publicly oppose the plan. In effect, as Carrie Muskat mentions, the other Cactus League teams really want the Cubs to stay, they just don’t want to pay for their stadium.

The White Sox’s statement basically came down to nobody helping them fund their new spring training home in Glendale just a couple of years ago. The idea is also a little controversial because it would mark the first time an entire league was hit with some kind of fee as opposed to a specific city or county levying a tax on their particular team.

Yankees go to China

Baseball is relatively new to China. No major league player has ever hailed from China and with well over a billion people, you can see why there’s an interest by teams to try to tap that area of the market. The New York Yankees tried to do just that when a contingent from the team brought the World Series trophy over to the country. Team president Randy Levine and general manager Brian Cashman led the group. For now, like MLB China’s president Leon Xie said, their approach to pushing baseball in China is basically just taking things one step at a time.

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