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By Murray Chass

December 6, 2016

The Hall of Fame and the Baseball Writers Association of America have an unnatural relationship, and the writers have no interest in ending it. That is the writers’ mistake. They would rather sacrifice their integrity and their independence for what they foolishly see as the prestige of serving as Jane Forbes Clark’s lackeys.

Clark is the chairman of the Hall of Fame. I don’t know how she treats her employees, but with the writers, when she says jump, they ask how high.

The most recent example of this wrong-headed relationship was overshadowed by Sunday’s deserving election of John Schuerholz, president and former general manager of the Atlanta Braves, and the undeserving election of Bud Selig, the former commissioner, who lied (steroids) and cheated (collusion) his way to Cooperstown.

On a post-election call with reporters, Selig had a perfect opportunity to come clean on collusion and the many other things he did wrong in his 22-years in office, but he chose not to be any more forthcoming than he was as commissioner.

A reporter asked him a question that included the word collusion, a word that probably is not in Selig’s vocabulary. That was the name for the owner’ illegal conspiracy against free agents in 1985-86-87.

“(That) was well before my commissionership,” Selig said.

That was probably the closest Selig has ever come to acknowledging collusion, but unfortunately the reporter who asked the question didn’t …

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By Murray Chass

December 3, 2016

Andre Dawson was a free agent after the 1986 season. He had played for the Montreal Expos for 11 years, their artificial turf had wrecked his knees and he was ready to move to a team that played on grass. The Chicago Cubs were that team.

The Cubs, however, wouldn’t talk to him or his agent, Richard Moss. Try as they might, Moss and Dawson could not elicit an offer from the Cubs’ president, Dallas Green.

As the season approached, Moss and Dawson continued to pursue Green but to no avail. Finally, they tried a different tactic. They walked into the Cubs’ camp, handed Green a blank contract signed by Dawson. All Green had to do was …

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By Murray Chass

November 27, 2016

The period was brief and, as it turned out, insignificant. Yet it prompted one of my favorite e-mails of the year.

This happened in September when the Yankees produced their best, albeit brief, stretch of the season. They played so well that they fooled their fans into thinking they actually had a chance of making the playoffs.

Typical of the foolishly fervent fans was a reader, Robert Imperato, who wrote, “I guess you were wrong about the Yankees and Brian Cashman. I hope you acknowledge that one day. Have fun in Paris.”

I didn’t get the Paris reference, but I understood the rest of the reader’s comment. He apparently thought the Yankees were headed to the playoffs and was eager to stick it to me. One problem with that plan. It was premature, The Yankees didn’t go to the playoffs, and their failure, their third in four years, reinforced my belief that the Yankees need a new general manager.

I am not in the practice of advocating the dismissal of a general manager or a manager, but Cashman has …

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