Wednesday, February 28, 2007

AS A BONUS, HE'S ONE OF THOSE UNEMPLOYED PEOPLE LEE ELIA WAS TALKING ABOUT: If you really follow the Chicago Cubs, you already know this, but Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban wants to buy the Cubs from the Tribune Company.

I don't know what the sentiment is like there in Chicago, and I don't know what Cuban's chances are, but if I were a Cubs fan, I would start sending Cuban money to get this done. A lot of people get irritated by Cuban's antics -- hounding the refs; staging publicity stunts -- but he is otherwise exactly what a team should want from an owner. First, he's a critical thinker who is likely to hire like-minded people, and critical thinking can have more of an effect in baseball (where "because it's always been done that way" still is an accepted rationale) than in some other sports. The Cubs have made a lot of easily-avoidable mistakes (Soriano and Baker come to mind), and my guess is that Cuban ownership would put an end to that. Second, he thinks hard about how to improve the fans' experience -- he's been more of an innovator in that area than anybody in the NBA. For Cubs' fans' sake, I really hope this happens.

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