The great trouble with baseball today is that most of the players are in the game for the money that's in it -- not for the love of it, the excitement ... the glorious thrill of it all ...As I'm sure you know, this "Back in my day ..." attitude is a huge pet peeve of mine and I --
Rice didn't say those words?
It was who --?
Here is what Rice actually said, at the Little League World Series:
We didn't [have] the baggy uniforms; we didn't have the dreadlocks; that's not part of the game. It was a clean game, and now they are setting a bad example for the young guys. ... What you see right now is more individuals; it's not a team. Now you have guys coming in. They pick the days they want to play. They make big money. The first thing they see are dollar bills.Rice isn't worth this work, but here goes:
1. "baggy uniforms" - Throughout most of baseball history, players wore baggy uniforms. Pictures exist of this. However, baseball also often follows American styles and in the Rice era, players wore tight pants. Rice's generation is the anomaly, not the rule.
2. "dreadlocks" - Statistical studies have shown that your choice of hair style do not make you hit or pitch better (or worse) than another person with "normal" hair. And check out some of the Afros from Rice's day, like Oscar Gamble's. Plus, the Afro was a political statement first associated with the Black Power Movement.
3. "a clean game" - Rice debuted with the Red Sox only five years after Sports Illustrated published a series of investigative stories showing that illegal drug use had infested every sport, including baseball. Players from that era now freely admit they popped amphetamines (now banned) like Skittles. And towards the end of Rice's career, baseball endured a huge cocaine scandal.
4. "more individuals ... not a team" - Weren't the Red Sox of Rice's day known by the "25 players, 25 cabs" adage?
5. "They pick the days they want to play" - Give me one example, Jim.
6. "dollar bills" - Rice's career began right around the time of free agency, a seismic shift in baseball history that allowed players (after a certain time) to offer their talents to the highest bidder or any team they wished to play for. Players were no longer chattel. Uploading all of the quotes from pre-free agency players complaining about the out-of-control salaries of Rice's era (and the big bucks that they missed out on) would likely break the internet.
Finally, Rice -- clueless to all of the words he had just spoken -- advised the young Little Leaguers:
[T]he first thing you need to have right now is respect.So the player who once tried to start a fist fight in the dugout with his manager and who, ignorant of history, craps all over modern players is talking about "respect".