Stealing a World Series and Robbing the MLB of Integrity

Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

"Nothing on TV is real, except baseball"

This was the motto our family settled on when my children were old enough to watch television.

It started with the constant, "I want, I want, I want" after every ridiculous commercial aimed at children.

-No, the dolls do not come with an entire scale-model mall with working escalators.

-No, fruit snacks will not cause the ground to erupt in geysers of fruit flavored jelly.

-No, eating sugar cereal does not mean you will get to play soccer with an anthropomorphic tiger or rabbit, chase after leprechauns, or visit a caveman dwelling.

So we came up with, "Commercials aren’t real"

Then they started watching the sitcoms on the Disney Channel and found that telling an adult, "Don’t have a cow, DUDE" doesn't get a round of applause and laughter when you don’t have a live studio audience available.

"People don’t really act like they do on TV shows"

Then they walked in on a horror movie when they were supposed to be in bed:

"Monsters are only for pretend"

Then after watching superhero movies and cop shows:

"Not all problems can be solved by punching like on TV"

Then they visited their 24 hour cable news junkie grandmother for a week and came back asking questions about pizzagate, secret Muslims, and why those deep state Democrats hate America so much…

"Fox News is an Orwellian propaganda machine, coordinated by the Republican party and foreign powers, to discredit journalism and destabilize Western civilization."

Which we shortened to "Nothing on TV is real except for baseball," because it rolls off the tongue better.

Then news of this banging scandal came out.

I’m not a member of the Dodger organization, or even a Dodger fan, and I understand they feel especially aggrieved knowing they were cheated out of a World Series title. However, even as a fan of the Twins, I have to wonder; should I care about MLB any more?

I’ve watched the Twins obsessively for the last decade, and I play in enough fantasy leagues that I’d watch pretty much any game airing. Like many of you, I listen to podcasts and read articles and books about every aspect of the game. Through it all, I had faith that no matter what, when I watch a game, I was seeing two teams trying their level best to win through a combination of athleticism, skill, and strategy. But it turns out, sometimes I was just watching batting practice.

Even though there are no reports of the Twins being involved, I'm seriously questioning whether the game is worth my attention at all. It's especially heart-breaking because for the first time in my adult life, ownership seems interested in winning. But the question remains: Is the product on the field any different than the commercials showing Nerf gun battles involve lasers and smoke instead of messy living rooms and screaming mothers?