Finally, the sort of Winter Meetings coverage we’ve been aching for, courtesy of not-quite-BBWAA-material scribe Keith Law.
Let me talk about the hotel that Minor League Baseball likes to force down the throats of the major league clubs (you know, the ones who make minor league owners™ insane profits possible) and the media covering the event, the Gaylord Opryland Hotel. You™re probably familiar with Hell™s Kitchen; this place is Hell™s Outhouse. I™m a pretty hardcore capitalist, and even I™m offended by the existence of this hotel. It™s enormous, large enough to get its own ZIP Code, with more wasted space than a banana plantation in the Yukon, and it™s overflowing with fake plastic trees and fake waterfalls and other crap straight from the mind of a designer who was clearly very, very mad at society when he came up with the concept. It takes about fifteen minutes to make a full circuit around the hotel, and can easily take upwards of twenty minutes to go from the lobby to certain guest rooms. Every restaurant and shop in the hotel is outrageously overpriced – $2.75 for a 20-ounce bottle of Dasani “ and non-guests are charged $16 to park with no in-and-out privileges. There™s no central lobby area for the winter meetings™ standard evening congregations, and the hotel itself is located a good fifteen to twenty minutes from downtown or any area with non-chain sit-down restaurants. I™m tempted to go for a career switch, train as a munitions expert, bribe a county official to condemn the building before the meetings return to this scar on America™s landscape and culture in 2012, and (with the government™s permission, of course) blow the damn place to oblivion. I have yet to find a front-office exec, scout, or writer who likes the place. But hey, outgoing Minor League President Mike Moore loves it, so it™s been there every four to five years for forever now, and we may be stuck with it even after the door hits Moore square in the ass on his way out. Thanks for nothing, Mike.