I have been very vocal about how much I dislike Donald Fehr and how he has not done anything right for baseball since the steroid era began.
Well ladies and gentleman, after 25 long and grueling yearts I am happy to announce that Fehr is stepping down as head of the Player’s Association.
Well, rather ESPN made the announcement on their website. The official announcement will be coming down later today.
According to the site, his replacement, pending approval will be general counsel Michael Weiner.
I am just so relieved Fehr is gone. He has been embarressment to the game. He was too busy looking out for the players than looking out to help bring integrity to the game. It seemed to me like he was always working against Bud Selig rather than working alongside him.
I understand his position is to do what is best for the players, but to a certain point. Without a no-tolerance drug policy in place, it appeared he only cared about bringing more money to the players.
How much better is Michael Weiner? Not sure. From what I was able to find out about him, he did serve as counself for the National Hockey League Player’s Association for salary arbitrations.
I have to wonder about how he feels about the drug policy in place. In 2005, Michael Morse was suspended for testing positive for an illegal substance. It was appealed. Here’s what Weiner had to say in the press release:
“Today the MLB Arbitration Panel denied the grievance the MLBPA filed challenging the 10-day suspension of Michael Morse. Under the terms of the Basic Agreement, the suspension had been stayed pending the decision by the Panel.
“With respect, we believe this result is unfair and unfortunate. It punishes Michael Morse again for conduct for which he has already been punished.
“At the hearing, Morse candidly admitted he had used steroids following the 2003 season, when he was a minor league player, but also testified he had not used steroids since. Because of that use, under the minor league testing program Morse tested positive and was suspended twice during 2004.
“Although he tested positive again in 2005 under the Major League program, it was for the same substance and at an extremely low level, a level which would give Morse no competitive advantage, and the Panel believed that the positive test was a result of Morse’s prior use. Nonetheless, the Panel concluded that the Basic Agreement required that Morse be suspended yet again.
“While we respect the Panel’s decision as final and binding, the PA does not believe the parties ever intended for the Basic Agreement to compel such a harsh result.”
It does not seem like he will do much better. From what I can tell, despite the player tested positive, because the amount could not give the player any advantage, Weiner felt that Morse should not have been punished.
Should that really matter? Of course not! The point was he tested positive. The policy is a player is punished for testing positive for steroids or anything else that is banned by major league baseball. It does not matter if it gives the player and edge or not.
He should think that if the player did not have enough to give him an edge, why should the player take it in the first place. I’m not sure how this will work. The PA might just have another Fehr, just under a different name.
Nobody in baseball seems to have anything bad to say about him. In 2007, USA Today did an article about him calling him “the most powerful man in baseball whom America doesn’t know”.
So the jury will be out on how Mr. Weiner will do in Fehr’s place until he officially has the position. It seems he is almost guaranteed the spot. It has been speculated for years that he would replace Fehr when he finally decided to step down.
Let’s hope it is for the best.