Monday, October 13, 2008

The Neverending Story

I listen to a lot of NPR and I like it a lot, but one of my biggest pet peeves is how they'll go for several weeks reporting essentially only one or two stories by dressing up logical extensions of those stories as new news. For example, over the summer you could count on a new story every day which was, essentially, "gas prices sure are high." First there was the straight "gas prices sure are high" story. Then there was the "the cost of some of the goods you buy in stores are going to go up because gas prices are high" story. Then there were the "Random Citizen X's life is different now because of high gas prices, and here's how" story, repeated with a different citizen every day for weeks on end. You get the idea.

This is not to say I don't appreciate depth -- and I suppose NPR would defend this by saying that they're providing just such depth -- but there is a fine line between going deeper on a story and merely providing multiple illustrations confirming the same story. A lot of the time they fall on the right side of that line, but sometimes they don't, and that's the sort of thing that has me hitting the preset buttons during my commute to see if any of Columbus' 15 classic rock stations are playing any Skynyrd (note: someone is always playing Skynyrd).

I mention this simply because I realize I've been doing much of the same thing lately with respect to the financial crisis' impact on baseball. I've probably written a dozen posts touching on it in recent weeks, but they all basically boil down to "when there's less money to go around, there's less money to be spent on baseball." I'm not saying I'm going to stop doing this -- hey, NPR has a pretty good model, and I don't even hit you up for donations twice I year -- it's just to say that I acknowledge it and am hereby offering something of a preemptive apology for it.

Anyway, due to the financial crisis, there is way less money to be spent on the Reds and Indians' new spring training facility in exurban Phoenix, and the result is that there may not be any commercial development around the joint for some time.

Unfortunately, I heard on NPR that gas prices are so high that it may not even be practical to drive those extra ten miles to get a postgame beer next March.


Pete Toms said...

I'm amongst those who think the FA market is going to be very interesting this offseason. You gotta think the big fish are gonna cash in huge but the mid tier guys????

Craig Calcaterra said...

Seriously. I'm a financial idiot, but I have many friends who aren't, and their view (not that it's earth shattering)is that any and all businesses with half a brain are going to horde cash for the forseeable future as they wait to see how everything shakes out. Given that there are only a handful of teams with more than half a brain, I still presume that this will mean a pretty depressed free agent market.

tHeMARksMiTh said...

Aren't gas prices going down? I realize that they're still high, but they've gone down about a dollar in the past month or so.