RIP Carl Pohlad
Pohlad's legacy is mixed, in my opinion. On one hand, this is a man who first sought to move his team and then actively promoted contraction. Throughout the 1990's, he was viewed as shamefully cheap, putting a team on the field with a miserly payroll and no chance to win. On the other hand, I don't think there's any question that he loved baseball and the Twins (despite the contraction efforts). He was the owner during the Twins two world title runs in 1987 and 1991. He authorized his GM to go over budget several times in the 2000's when the team finally started winning again. If nothing else, Pohlad provided a stable figure from 1984 to 2009. There are many worse owners throughout the sports world, and in a way I will miss him. Undoubtedly, the 2009 season will be dedicated to him.
UPDATE: My apologies if I missed it, but how is it that ESPN at no point today had this on the front page anywhere? The death of the 25-year owner of a team that twice won the World Series in that span strikes me as newsworthy enough to get at least a few hours on the front page, but I looked for this several times today on ESPN and could only find it in the MLB section. In contrast, CNNSI still has the story on the front page after a good half-day, and for a few hours after the news came out MSNBC had it in their major headlines section on the front page, meaning it penetrated not just sports news but actual news news. Ultimately this is pretty inconsequential, but it strikes me as a tremendous oversight on ESPN's part. I'll score that as an error to the webpage headlines editor for ESPN.
UPDATE 2: Talk about weird timing -- this morning I checked ESPN and, whatdya know, ESPN has finally put Pohlad's death on the front page. This leads me to believe this really was a "whoops" moment on the part of whoever was editing the headlines yesterday, because certainly Pohlad's death didn't become more newsworthy overnight. I'm guessing someone with some clout in the baseball section noticed the oversight and found a way to get the news on the front page. Better late than never, I suppose.