Dear Mariano Rivera,
Baseball can’t afford to lose you. Not now. Not at a time when athletes who are liars and cheats dominate the headlines in our national pastime. Major League Baseball needs your class, honor, dignity, sportsmanship, and respect for the game — now more than ever. The values you represent in such a professional manner are increasingly in short supply today in the world of pro sports in general, and Major League Baseball in particular.
Your sterling inning at the recent All-Star Game will be the takeaway memory from this year’s Midsummer Classic — not just because of your athletic performance (which was top-notch as usual), but because of the love and respect that your teammates, opponents, game announcers, and fans (even a great majority of the Mets’ fans!) showed you. The reception you received upon entering the game was a beautiful tribute to a true baseball role model.
Mariano, you’re still on top of your game. Yankee radio announcer John Sterling said this week that you are as good as you’ve ever been, if not better. But more than your outstanding performance on the field, America needs the active witness of your character — on and off the field.
You’ve always been the epitome of a “team player.” But in this case, the team that needs you the most isn’t only the Yankees. It’s America’s baseball fans.
You represent hope; hope that our baseball ideals aren’t lost forever in this era of performance-enhancing drugs and highly tainted baseball records.
One more year, Mo! That’s all we ask.
Ralph Nader, Founder, League of Fans
Ken Reed, Sports Policy Director, League of Fans
Sports Forum Podcast
Episode #26 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: How Can We Fix Youth Sports? – John O’Sullivan is Founder and CEO of Changing the Game Project and author of “Changing the Game: The Parents Guide to Raising Happy, High Performing Athletes and Giving Youth Sports Back to Our Kids.” We discuss overzealous adults in youth sports, the dangers of sport specialization, youth sports entrepreneurs and the profit-at-all-costs mindset, and the growing socio-economic gap in youth sports.
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Episode #25 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Physical Education Should Be a Critical Component of K-12 School Design – Michael Horn is co-founder of the Clayton Christensen Institute for Disruptive Innovation.
Episode #24 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Mental Health and Athletes: Ending the Stigma – Nathan Braaten and Taylor Ricci are the founders of Dam Worth It, a non-profit created to end the stigma around mental health at colleges and universities through sport, storytelling, and community creation.
Episode #23 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Olympian Benita Fitzgerald Mosley Talks Title IX, Youth Sports and the Olympics.
Episode #22 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Rethinking Sports Fandom with Author Craig Calcaterra – We discuss Calcaterra’s new book “Rethinking Fandom: How to Beat the Sports-Industrial Complex at Its Own Game” and explore new ways to be a fan.
Episode #21 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Chatting About a Broken Game With Baseball Writer Pedro Moura – Moura is a national baseball writer for Fox Sports. We discuss how and why the game of baseball is broken, what factors caused it, and offer a few thoughts on how to “fix” a great game.
Media"How We Can Save Sports" author Ken Reed appears on Fox & Friends to explain how there's "too much adult in youth sports."
Ken Reed appears on Mornings with Gail from KFKA Radio in Colorado to discuss bad parenting in youth athletics.
“Should College Athletes Be Paid?” Ken Reed on The Morning Show from Wisconsin Public Radio
Ken Reed appears on KGNU Community Radio in Colorado (at 02:30) to discuss equality in sports and Title IX.
Ken Reed appears on the Ralph Nader Radio Hour (at 38:35) to discuss his book The Sports Reformers: Working to Make the World of Sports a Better Place, and to talk about some current sports issues.
- League of Fans Sports Policy Director Ken Reed quoted in Washington Post column titled "What happened to P.E.? It’s losing ground in our push for academic improvement," by Jay Mathews
League of Fans is a sports reform project founded by Ralph Nader to fight for the higher principles of justice, fair play, equal opportunity and civil rights in sports; and to encourage safety and civic responsibility in sports industry and culture.
Sports & Torts – Ken Reed, Sports Policy Director, League of Fans – at the American Museum of Tort Law
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Ken Reed’s Author Page on Amazon