More on Marvin Miller

November 28, 2012

Today’s newspapers are rife with news about the passing of Marvin Miller, who died yesterday at the age of 95. The pieces fall mostly into three general categories: straight-ahead obituaries,  op-ed pieces discussing his importance to the sports world, and items on Miller’s continued snub for induction into baseball’s Hall of Fame, as exemplified in this piece by former New York Times baseball columnist Murray Chass and this one by Rob Neyer at SB Nation on why Miller has yet to be included in the Hall.

There will, no doubt, be much more on Miller in the days to come. Here is just a small sampling:

* The Times‘ Richard Goldstein wrote this obit, the size  of which (A1, jumping to a full page) is usually reserved for presidents and world leaders.Former MLB commissioner Faye Vincent also paid tribute to Miller in the Times, as did the paper’s sports media writer, Richard Sandomir. The Washington Post also referred to Miller on its front page.

* Sen. Jim Bunning, a former ace pitcher for the Philadelphia Phillies and other teams, shared his thoughts with Time Magazine.

* Since Miller’s work extended beyond the sports world, periodicals like Business Week and The Wall Street Journal (heck, even AARP) also carried the story of his death.

*   Dahlia Lithwick, who contributed the essay on the  late Marvin Miller for the Jewish Jocks anthology, sent in her thoughts to my other blog, Kaplan’s Korner, on Miller’s death:

Just sad about the Hall of Fame I guess — he deserved it and I suspect it hurt him.

I think the way he reshaped modern baseball can’t be overstated and the way he had to do it — by persuading one player at a time that the rules were unfair; that the reserve clause was wrong; that they deserved more and that it wasn’t enough that they felt lucky just to play — is amazing and inspiring to anyone who cares about social change today.


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