Wednesday, November 03, 2004

DC Baseball news

Lost in all the shuffle and scuffle over the election yesterday, there was some news to report on the baseball front here in Washington.

First, we have a new interim general manager, Mark Bowden, who was named to the position yesterday. Bowden comes from the Cincinnatti Reds, which he led for ten years during and after Marge Schott's reign of terror. He was let go after the season last year, probably unfairly blamed for the fiasco surrounding bringing Ken Griffey, Jr. to that team and a dreadful on-field performance. That said, he was long thought to be one of the brightest young GMs in the league and skillfully led a mid-market team to some decent success. I think he'll be a good fit here. I certainly like this move over the alternatives (Pat Gillick, whom I was not thrilled with, and former Yankees GM and baseball executive Bob Watson). He has quite a bit of work ahead of him - trying to resign talent and improve a club while ownership is still somewhat up in the air. 2005 is going to be a long season for our Senators - we're not going to be able to make much of a play in the free agent market, so we're likely to field a very young, very inexperienced team which...in all likelihood...will not be that great. But...you gotta have heart!

Also submerged in the news, Tony Williams delivered a revised stadium bill to the DC City Council, which apparently modifies the tax component a bit and also includes $450 million in development funds.
Mayoral aides said the changes answer the major concerns expressed by business owners and residents, who have reservations about the proposed use of public funds to build a stadium. Two council committees will consider the legislation and vote on it today. If approved by both, the bill will go to the full 13-member council for a first vote Tuesday. A final vote could take place Dec. 7.
The new business tax plan seems to raise the tax threshold to $4 million and up and more heavily tax the big guys instead of the little ones. Naturally, Ralph f*ing Nader had to stick his nose in where it didn't belong yesterday, but...he has become so marginalized anymore, I'm not certain his opinion still counts. Does anyone care what he has to say?

Should pass committees today, prelim vote next week - votes appear to be there (for the present).

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