Congrats, Bud Selig: A-Rod is now the face of MLB
After all the attempts to vilify Alex Rodriguez and disassociate him from the game of baseball, Selig has managed to do the exact opposite, and Rodriguez is now the face of Major League Baseball.
According to a recent study, Alex Rodriguez is now the most recognizable name in all of Major League Baseball.
Not Triple Crown winner Miguel Cabrera. Not elder statesman and future Hall of Famer Derek Jeter. Not retiring legend Mariano Rivera. Not young phenoms Mike Trout, Bryce Harper and Yasiel Puig.
Alex Rodriguez, now best known for being a serial abuser of performance enhancing drugs, is the most recognizable name in all of baseball, particularly to casual fans and non-fans of the sport.
So basically, out of all the people that MLB should be trying to reach out to, Alex Rodriguez is the first player they think of when Major League Baseball comes to mind.
The diehard baseball fans will always be around. They're the ones who, when asked to name the face of baseball, will name guys like Cabrera, Trout, Clayton Kershaw, and other exciting players with clean reputations and huge potential.
However, MLB needs to market themselves to the casual fans and non-fans, and figure out how to endear their sport to them and get them to enjoy the sport.
By making Alex Rodriguez the most recognizable name in the sport due to clearly negative reasons, baseball only further alienates itself from these non-fans, and it basically ensures that they'll probably never have any interest in giving the sport a chance.
If the first person people think of when they think of a sport is someone who is surrounded by negativity, why would they want to become a fan of that sport?
Instead of focusing on the greatness of Cabrera, Trout, Kershaw and others, Selig has decided to go on an all-out witch hunt to try to "clean up" a game that is still as dirty as it has ever been.
Without even a positive test (recently), MLB has suspended a dozen players and is in the process of trying to suspend A-Rod for over an entire season.
When you're as big as Major League Baseball, the adage "all publicity is good publicity" no longer applies. They need to pull their heads out of the sand, stop focusing on the negativity and trying to tear down players, and they need to work on repairing their image. Because right now, their game just doesn't have the right face on it.