(Reinsdorf, on the working side of town, refusing to refund those 2007 Sox playoff tickets he sold last April.)
If Gene Woj phoned-in his weak ass column on the Cuban-Reinsdorf “stand-off” re Cuban buying the Cubs, The Trib’s Bob Verdi literally offers a dropped cell-phone call of a column to Jerry Reinsdorf to grill him about the biggest non-issue in Chicago sports since Piniella yanked Zambrano in Game One of the Cub collapse to the currently collapsing Diamondbacks. Also, Verdi uses the word “methinks” in a sports column.
“I never said I was against Cuban,” Reinsdorf said, and he wasn’t chuckling anymore. “The way it happened, I was standing around the batting cage at a Sox game one day and when the subject came up, I mentioned that when the basketball owners voted on Cuban, it turned out to be 29-1. I never said I was the one who voted against him. And I never said I wasn’t.”
Smelling blood, I pressed on.
“Well,” I said, “were you the 1?”
“I see no value in saying yes or no now,” Reinsdorf responded. “How did you get my number again?”
I have nothing to base this on, but after our brief discussion, I am compelled to believe Reinsdorf would rather have Thanksgiving dinner with Jay Mariotti and me than allow a wild and crazy guy like Cuban into an industry without a salary cap. I’m not sure he would be a comfortable fit because of his spending sprees, blogs, antics and never mind that he let Steve Nash walk.
Baseball is in excellent shape now. Four major markets — New York, Chicago, Los Angeles and Philadelphia — were wiped out during the division series. That might not help TV ratings. But the trade-off is that three of the franchises advancing — Arizona, Cleveland and Colorado — exercise the very type of fiscal restraint that warms the cockles of management’s wallets. Even if he weren’t the next George Frankensteinbrenner and even if he didn’t disparage umpires, Cuban might not get the required three-quarters approval.
What happens if Cuban chases the Cubs?
“I would study the proposal,” Reinsdorf said, “as we all would, of any potential buyer. I would look over all the documents, listen to the applicant, weigh the situation, and reach a decision based on logic. How’s that?”
Methinks Reinsdorf might be a great guy, but he was the 1.