Saturday, August 11, 2007

Check out Sunday's Bulletin

I provide an analysis of what the future may hold for the Connecticut Defenders. Hopefully it will spark debate, conversation and maybe even action towards keeping the team in place.


thehondohurricane said...

Sorry, I can't reply yet. It would be a profanity based diatribe that wouldn't solve anything. I'll be back in a day or so.

greg8370 said...

Like hondo I suspect, I too have anger. Don't know really where to begin so let us look collectively in the mirror:
Well the heck is everyone? It's a great park, easy enough to get to and it's a cheap night out but unless there is fireworks or some other promo the crowd is me, hondo, lance and a couple hundred or so other diehards, the front office staff and that's basically it. So at best when this asset leaves there won't be a lot of tears shed.
Why are there not more people there? Small population base that is a service economy driven is one factor. Other reasons....
A parent club located 3000+ miles away which in five years has not seen it's Double A club make the playoffs once. Has not ever provide us with a rehab appearance. Whose GM, and I could be wrong, has never even been here.
A team that moves it's prospects around like checkers--Velez, one day a 2B, the next a CF, the next a LF--never mind their farm system is littered with "4th" outfielder types.
Local Ownership? i.e. Lou? First Lou isn't here much. He's on his third GM in as many years and I like this current front office group alot. I think this is an investment he's going to be looking to turn plain and simple for a buck.
Local media? The Day covers the team when they feel like it--bottom line. The Bulletin? better coverage but not the circulation of the Day.
Local politics? Who owes who how much is what it boils down to.
The future? Maybe a NY-Penn team, maybe an indy team (ugh) if we're lucky. More likely a big hole in the ground at the top of the hill.
Me? I hope to be the last fan out.

thehondohurricane said...

Your article of 8/12/07 pretty much repeated a conversation you and I had recently at Dodd, but seeing it in print gives one the sense of finality. But I'm not going to go quietly because there's a lot of blame to pass around and I'm going to address what I consider the three main culprits; 1) BiBella 2)The Giants 3) The media.
1) Lou DiBella
DiBella has invested his money into the team and like any wise investor, he wants a return on that investment. That's his right and I can't argue the philosophy. But one can argue his performance as the teams chief decision maker.
From the beginning DiBella proved he should have remained in boxing exclusively.As Greg has pointed out, he's working on his third GM and finally, he has it right. Without giving Charlie and his staff a second year, he pulls the plug. And blames everyone for the lack of attendance except himself.
Let's go back to the DARE day three years ago. There were over 7000 in attendance that day, mostly school aged children. The concessions were overwhelmed and understaffed. Service was slow, promised meals were not forthcoming, it was a disaster. I heard many adults say that day they would never bring the kids back to Dodd, and judging by attendance for the last two DARE days, they haven't. Too bad because things are much more organized today.
I don't live in Norwich so I'm not familiar with the local "movers and shakers", but I'll wager they weren't too happy when Lou changed the team name to Connecticut. Also, all press conferences are held at the casinos and the visiting teams are housed in a Mystic hotel. Not exactly the way to get the Norwich officials to throw in their support. I'm sure the city has adequate facilities for major announcements and suitable accomodations for the visiting team.
I could go on all day about this guy, but what's the sense? He's spit in the face of his capable staff and the fans every chance he's had. He brought in Don King, his staff brought in the Zooperstars. Anyone want to guess who drew the larger crowd and who jacked up the crowd?
2) The Giants
In my opinion, the worst farm system in all of baseball. Other then two pitchers, Cain and Lowery, they have produced zip. (To early to tell about Lincecum) Other then a bunch of position players and pitchers who have yo yo'd back and forth on the Fresno express, the system has been barren. Not one Def/Gator team has made the play off and most have struggled to get to .500. And if memory serves me right, .500 happened once.
Of course, the past 2 1/2 years, we were blessed by a misplaced manager who was clearly out of his league. Does anyone other than me believe the recent hitting by the team is an accident?
Greg covered the issue of rehab appearances, but I'll add one thought; outside of Barry Bonds, who on the Giants would excite people by making a rehab in Norwich? This was clearly a bad marriage from the beginning.
Bottom line is the Giants organization is stinko.
3) The Media
I'm out of my league on this subject, but Joe and I have previously jousted about attendance, franchise stability, and general baseball issues. But its all been negative. I think the team is ultimately responsible for generating fan interest, but the media hasn't been a positive force as much as a negative force. It's too bad this couldn't have waited until the off season. If the death knell is going to be sounded, let us few fans enjoy the last three home series.

Finally, DiBella can take short season A ball and insert in a place where the sun dosen't shine. I've already checked and my trail of bread crumbs leading to New Britain Stadium are still there. I'll miss Dodd and all the friendly folks who work there, but New Britain will give me "my fix" for Double A ball.