Not willing to settle for anything as mundane as preseason predictions of Divisional Champs, MVP, Rookie Of The Year, etc., Newsday’s Ken Davidoff looks into the future and tries to determine when the following milestones, amongst others, will take place.
The first woman general manager: This will mark the ultimate intrusion of the “old boys’ club” that sports’ executive suites have nearly always been. Kim Ng (above, right), assistant general manager of the Dodgers since 2002 (she worked the same job with the Yankees from 1998 through 2001), is the favorite to get the chance, but if young men can shoot up the ladder as quickly as Theo Epstein and Queens native Jon Daniels did – both were hired at age 28 – then why can’t a young woman do the same? ETA: 2007
The first use of instant replay: Man, this sure is taking a long time, isn’t it? Selig opposes it – hence the delay – but one more brutal postseason of umpiring ought to put the issue high enough on the agenda. ETA: 2008
The first player with 500 or more home runs to not make the Hall of Fame: Mark McGwire’s day of reckoning comes soonest, as he’ll be on his first ballot this coming winter. He has virtually no shot of getting to Cooperstown next July, but he’ll probably be on at least 5 percent of the ballots, in perpetuity, and such a player stays on the ballot for 15 years.
I’m going to trust in the good work of our world’s journalistic community and count on new information coming out about McGwire’s sins. And I’m going to trust, once more, in the moral fiber of the Baseball Writers Association of America. McGwire will need 75 percent support to get in. I say he never makes it. ETA: 2021
The first Mets no-hitter. Kudos to Newsday colleague Mike Casey for this suggestion. They’ve employed Tom Seaver, Nolan Ryan, Jerry Koosman, Dwight Gooden, David Cone, Frank Viola, Pedro Martinez and Tom Glavine … and not once, in 44 seasons, can anyone throw nine innings without giving up a hit? ETA: 2462