Do you know what I’m tired of? People acting in bad faith. Other people applauding the bad-faith actors for finding a way to manipulate the system in a manner that clearly wasn’t intended. Why do so many people seem to believe that the spirit of a policy is irrelevant?

Nick Senzel should be on the Opening Day roster. When asked about manipulating service time with regards to Senzel on Thursday, Dick Williams said, “I anticipate putting the best team out there that we can.”

I don’t want to hear service time arguments and here’s why:

  1. The owners have broken free agency. “But wait!” you say. “No one should sign players to ridiculously long contracts.” Yet, we ignore the fact that the draft is all about locking players up for 10+ years between the minors and majors. In order to even get a foothold in professional baseball, you have to sign a 10+ year long contract wherein you are only allowed to negotiate with one of the 30 possible employers. Before, you could expect a big pay day at the end. Now you can’t. If you are pro-free market, you should have a problem with this. If you are pro-labor, you should have a problem with this. But if you’re pro-monopoly, you’re probably okay with it.
  2. It’s bad for baseball. The best league is a league where all the best players play. I did the math on this a couple of years ago for The Hardball Times. And it is abundantly clear that players have had their major league debuts delayed since free agency began. In recent years, it’s gotten even worse.
  3. It’s a bad faith move. I get how the world works. I get that there are always people trying to take advantage of the system. But I’m over applauding them for doing so. If my children did something this disingenuous, I would be disappointed in them and we would need to have a talk about it. Why then, am I expected to encourage it in adults?

So that’s it. Steve made his points yesterday that keeping Senzel down for a few weeks made sense. His facts are right, but I disagree with the application. I was raised to believe that people should act honestly and in good faith. I may have to accept that there is dishonesty and bad faith behind the actions of many people. But I don’t have to like it and I don’t have to approve of it. My values can’t be bought for the price of a few wins in seven years. Nick Senzel should start the season on the roster. Not because it’s the best business move, but because it’s the honest move.