Arizona Diamondbacks Wiretap
Union executive director Michael Weiner issued a statement denouncing Arizona's new immigration law, which has sparked widespread protests over the last few days -- including one outside Wrigley Field Thursday as the Diamondbacks played the Cubs. The meat of the statement, which Weiner said reflects the "institutional position" of the union and was arrived at after consultation with the members, reads as follows:
The Major League Baseball Players Association opposes this law as written. We hope that the law is repealed or modified promptly. If the current law goes into effect, the MLBPA will consider additional steps necessary to protect the rights and interests of our members.
While the Diamondbacks have said they will not take a stand as an organization on the issue, Weiner's statement makes the union's displeasure with Senate Bill 1070 abundantly clear. Not that the "additional steps" the union would take in response are clear, but missives like this are best kept a bit vague.
A few dozen immigrant rights activists chanted "Boycott Arizona" outside Wrigley Field in Chicago as the Cubs opened a four-game series against the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Protesters are upset over Arizona's new immigration law that makes it a crime to be in the U.S. illegally.
Activists nationwide have called for a boycott of Arizona tourism and of state businesses.
The Diamondbacks are close to signing Wagner Mateo, but nothing is official yet.
"dbacks have not yet signed wagner mateo. still haven't done medicals. and the amount they've agreed to terms on is $512,000," Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic wrote on his Twitter page.
The teenage outfield prospect from the Dominican had a deal with the Cardinals voided after a failed physical.
Attendance has not been robust so far at Chase Field, where there has been a 17.4 percent drop compared with the first eight games of last season.
Entering Wednesday night's series finale against St. Louis, the Diamondbacks had drawn 194,873 compared with 235,900 last season.
Certainly some of the dip can be attributed to playing poor-drawing teams such as the San Diego Padres and Pittsburgh Pirates in the first homestand of the season. Last year, the Diamondbacks faced the Colorado Rockies, Los Angeles Dodgers and Cardinals in the first three home series.
After attracting a strong crowd of 24,167 against the Cardinals on Monday, attendance dipped to 19,855 on Tuesday.
Diamondbacks CEO Derrick Hall expects attendance to pick up this weekend when the Philadelphia Phillies are in town, but he acknowledges that last year's 92-loss season is a factor.
"The opponent will certainly help, but I think a factor is going to be where we are in the standings," Hall said. "Coming off of last season, I think a lot of fans have a wait-and-see approach to buying tickets and I don't blame them."
The Diamondbacks have placed outfielder Conor Jackson on the 15-day disabled list with a strained right hamstring.
Jackson was hurt while lunging for Will Venable's fly ball in the seventh inning of Sunday's 5-3 loss at San Diego.
He missed virtually all of last season with a fatigue-causing illness known as "valley fever."
Diamondbacks Apr 2010 Archive