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Vincent ’60 on Olympic Softball/Baseball

Fay Vincent ’60 had an op-ed (permanent copy here) in the New York Times, datelined Williamstown, on the recent decision to remove baseball and softball from the Olympic Games.

From what I understand, the decision by the International Olympic Committee to eliminate baseball and softball was most likely prompted by two problems with American baseball. (Softball, it seems, was pretty much an innocent bystander.) What were the problems? First, the world’s best players were kept out of the Olympics because Major League Baseball barred its players from competing in the Games. Second, professional baseball’s antidoping program is below Olympic standards.

Vincent is obviously much better connected than I, but it seems clear that softball was hurt because, well, it isn’t really played much outside the US. I could also see that, if the IOC wants to restrict the games to 10,000 athletes, it needs to make some hard choices as more and more countries have swimmers and runners to send.

Read the whole thing.