FCPA: Money, Money, Money

I tried. I really tried. I tried not to rant about the Houston Astros during Spring Training, because as they say ‘hope springs eternal’ as all teams are tied at this point in the season (0-0). So when the Astros announced they were considering moving their Triple-A affiliate from Oklahoma City to The Woodlands, a town in the incorporated limits of Houston, I did not write a post which complained that such a move would bring competition to an already existing Triple-A team in Houston, the aforementioned Houston Astros.

The Astros owner Jim Crane was interviewed by Brian Costa for a Wall Street Journal (WSJ) article, entitled “Houston School of Economics”, which Costa ended with the following quotes from Crane, “I didn’t make $100 million by making a lot of dumb mistakes,” and “We’re not going to get everything right, but we’re going to get a lot right”; I did not write asking what part they were going to “get a lot right” about this year.

Crane had another interesting quote in the WSJ piece, “It doesn’t bother me that people want us to spend more money,” Crane said. “But it’s not their money. This is a private company, even though it’s got a public flair to it. If they want to write a check for 10 million bucks, they can give me a call.” How about that for dedication to your fan base, “a public flair to it”; I did not write an article asking that maybe the fact that the Astros play in a publicly funded stadium might have something to do with it.

But this week, Peter Gammons, one of the most respected baseball writers around tweeted his thoughts on the Astros; I could not take it anymore. Gammons tweeted the following three tweets:

Tweet 1: If I’m an ALE or ALC owner, Houston’s plan to have no payroll, lose, get the 1-2 pick 4 years in a row and still steal revenue-sharing $

Tweet 2: –may guarantee 3 teams in the AL West win 90 games and make the playoffs, and spit on the integrity of the sport ...

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