30 Sep 2004 06:44:29
Xavier Leclerc
Tribute to the Expos

Americans contend that Montreal is solely a hockey city and that
baseball had no place there. Let me set the record straight.

Montreal had a franchise in the International League for many decades
until approx. 1960. Jackie Robinson made his professional debut with
the Montreal Royals. In times where Black people were chased by mobs
in the USA, Montrealer were running after Robinson not to hang him,
but to embrace him. He is still the most spectacular player who ever
played in Montreal.

The Expos appeared in 1969 and in the 70's they were one of the best
franchises in baseball, churning out talented players: Gary Carter,
Steve Rogers, André Dawson, Warren Cromartie, Bill Gullickson, Charlie
Lea, Andres Galaraga, Ellis Valentine, Tim Raines, etc. They were
serious contenders to the Eastern Division pennant, losing at the last
game of the 1979 and 1980 seasons to eventual World Series champions,
the Phillies and the Pirates. They clenched the pennant in 1981,
losing the National League final at the last game against the Dodgers
on a heart-breaking homerun by Rick Monday.

In this purportedly only-hockey city, the Expos drew during many years
almost 3
million people to Olympic Stadium. Fans were chanting in the stands
and guys like Gary Carter and Tim Raines were superstars and national
heroes. Then free-agency started to break the neck of this original
franchise.

Salaries escalated in such a way that the Montreal market could not
bear it
anymore. Canadian currency had dropped down by approx. 40% compared to
the US
dollar, a considerable toll for the Expos who payed their players in
USD. The TV and radio market was not comparable to NY or LA. The Expos
had not the backbone to pay their stars in a way to compete with the
Mets, the Red Sox or the Dodgers.

In 1994, they still had the best record in baseball when the strike
broke out. The new work contract did not have a salary cap and the
Expos were doomed to loose all their all-star players. So they made a
fire sale. Marquis Grissom, Ken Hill, Jeff Fassero, John Wetteland,
David Segui, Henry Rodriguez were all traded for minor league players.
Later Larry Walker, future batting champion, was lost to the Colorado
Rockies. Eventually, in the years to come, every star was to be
traded, including the Cy Young award winner, Pedro Martinez. The team
dropped to last place. The message was clear to the fans: Montreal
could not support a winning team and the Expos were doomed to be a
second rate franchise. Fans were fed up and deserted Olympic Stadium.

Now the Expos have left Montreal forever. I know American fans don't
give a damn about it. But what happened in Montreal will repeat sooner
or later in smaller american markets, if baseball doesn't change.
Think it over.


30 Sep 2004 09:59:30
Steve Grant
Re: Tribute to the Expos

"Xavier Leclerc" <[email protected] > wrote in message
news:[email protected]
> Americans contend that Montreal is solely a hockey city and that
> baseball had no place there.

*This* American doesn't contend any such thing.

> Now the Expos have left Montreal forever. I know American fans don't
> give a damn about it.

You know wrongly.




30 Sep 2004 13:43:19
David Marc Nieporent
Re: Tribute to the Expos

In article <[email protected] >,
[email protected] (Xavier Leclerc) wrote:

>Americans contend that Montreal is solely a hockey city and that
>baseball had no place there. Let me set the record straight.

If one is going to "set the record straight," one should try being
straight, first.

[...]

>In this purportedly only-hockey city, the Expos drew during many years
>almost 3
>million people to Olympic Stadium.

No, they didn't. Not only didn't they do it "during many years," but they
never once came close.

http://baseball-reference.com/teams/MON/attend.shtml

I have nothing against Montreal, and I think they've been treated
shamefully by MLB. And they had abysmal luck in that their two best years
both were killed by strikes. But the Expos were never overly well
supported. The most you can say is that they were one of the higher
drawing teams in the league for about 5 years in the early 80s.

They stopped drawing well long before the mid-1990s when they kept making
noises about having to give up their good players. They were consistently
at the bottom of the league (though obviously better than they are now)
from the mid-80s onward.

---------------------------------------------
David M. Nieporent [email protected]


30 Sep 2004 13:29:25
Mark Wolven
Re: Tribute to the Expos

[email protected] (Xavier Leclerc) wrote in message news:<[email protected] >...
> Americans contend that Montreal is solely a hockey city and that
> baseball had no place there. Let me set the record straight.
>
> Montreal had a franchise in the International League for many decades
> until approx. 1960. Jackie Robinson made his professional debut with
> the Montreal Royals. In times where Black people were chased by mobs
> in the USA, Montrealer were running after Robinson not to hang him,
> but to embrace him. He is still the most spectacular player who ever
> played in Montreal.
>

Maybe Montreal can once again become an International League
franchise.

> The Expos appeared in 1969 and in the 70's they were one of the best
> franchises in baseball, churning out talented players: Gary Carter,
> Steve Rogers, André Dawson, Warren Cromartie, Bill Gullickson, Charlie
> Lea, Andres Galaraga, Ellis Valentine, Tim Raines, etc. They were
> serious contenders to the Eastern Division pennant, losing at the last
> game of the 1979 and 1980 seasons to eventual World Series champions,
> the Phillies and the Pirates. They clenched the pennant in 1981,
> losing the National League final at the last game against the Dodgers
> on a heart-breaking homerun by Rick Monday.
>

From 1970-1979, the Expos finshed 4th or worse 9/10 years, finshing
second in 1979 - which is also the only time they finished with better
than a .500 record. For the period 1970-79, they were 114 games under
.500 at 748-862.

> In this purportedly only-hockey city, the Expos drew during many years
> almost 3
> million people to Olympic Stadium. Fans were chanting in the stands
> and guys like Gary Carter and Tim Raines were superstars and national
> heroes. Then free-agency started to break the neck of this original
> franchise.
>
> Salaries escalated in such a way that the Montreal market could not
> bear it
> anymore. Canadian currency had dropped down by approx. 40% compared to
> the US
> dollar, a considerable toll for the Expos who payed their players in
> USD. The TV and radio market was not comparable to NY or LA. The Expos
> had not the backbone to pay their stars in a way to compete with the
> Mets, the Red Sox or the Dodgers.
>

Well, you said it right there, Montreal cannot compete.

> In 1994, they still had the best record in baseball when the strike
> broke out. The new work contract did not have a salary cap and the
> Expos were doomed to loose all their all-star players. So they made a
> fire sale. Marquis Grissom, Ken Hill, Jeff Fassero, John Wetteland,
> David Segui, Henry Rodriguez were all traded for minor league players.
> Later Larry Walker, future batting champion, was lost to the Colorado
> Rockies. Eventually, in the years to come, every star was to be
> traded, including the Cy Young award winner, Pedro Martinez. The team
> dropped to last place. The message was clear to the fans: Montreal
> could not support a winning team and the Expos were doomed to be a
> second rate franchise. Fans were fed up and deserted Olympic Stadium.
>

The 1994 strike screwed the Expos more than any other baseball
city....

> Now the Expos have left Montreal forever. I know American fans don't
> give a damn about it. But what happened in Montreal will repeat sooner
> or later in smaller american markets, if baseball doesn't change.
> Think it over.


30 Sep 2004 20:30:02
Tom MacIntyre
Re: Tribute to the Expos

On 30 Sep 2004 06:44:29 -0700, [email protected] (Xavier Leclerc)
wrote:

>Americans contend that Montreal is solely a hockey city and that
>baseball had no place there. Let me set the record straight.
>
>Montreal had a franchise in the International League for many decades
>until approx. 1960. Jackie Robinson made his professional debut with
>the Montreal Royals. In times where Black people were chased by mobs
>in the USA, Montrealer were running after Robinson not to hang him,
>but to embrace him. He is still the most spectacular player who ever
>played in Montreal.
>
>The Expos appeared in 1969 and in the 70's they were one of the best
>franchises in baseball, churning out talented players: Gary Carter,
>Steve Rogers, André Dawson, Warren Cromartie, Bill Gullickson, Charlie
>Lea, Andres Galaraga, Ellis Valentine, Tim Raines, etc. They were
>serious contenders to the Eastern Division pennant, losing at the last
>game of the 1979 and 1980 seasons to eventual World Series champions,
>the Phillies and the Pirates. They clenched the pennant in 1981,
>losing the National League final at the last game against the Dodgers
>on a heart-breaking homerun by Rick Monday.
>
>In this purportedly only-hockey city, the Expos drew during many years
>almost 3
>million people to Olympic Stadium. Fans were chanting in the stands
>and guys like Gary Carter and Tim Raines were superstars and national
>heroes. Then free-agency started to break the neck of this original
>franchise.
>
>Salaries escalated in such a way that the Montreal market could not
>bear it
>anymore. Canadian currency had dropped down by approx. 40% compared to
>the US
>dollar, a considerable toll for the Expos who payed their players in
>USD. The TV and radio market was not comparable to NY or LA. The Expos
>had not the backbone to pay their stars in a way to compete with the
>Mets, the Red Sox or the Dodgers.
>
>In 1994, they still had the best record in baseball when the strike
>broke out. The new work contract did not have a salary cap and the
>Expos were doomed to loose all their all-star players. So they made a
>fire sale. Marquis Grissom, Ken Hill, Jeff Fassero, John Wetteland,
>David Segui, Henry Rodriguez were all traded for minor league players.
>Later Larry Walker, future batting champion, was lost to the Colorado
>Rockies. Eventually, in the years to come, every star was to be
>traded, including the Cy Young award winner, Pedro Martinez. The team
>dropped to last place. The message was clear to the fans: Montreal
>could not support a winning team and the Expos were doomed to be a
>second rate franchise. Fans were fed up and deserted Olympic Stadium.
>
>Now the Expos have left Montreal forever. I know American fans don't
>give a damn about it. But what happened in Montreal will repeat sooner
>or later in smaller american markets, if baseball doesn't change.
>Think it over.

1994 was what drove the final nail into the coffin. It drove me away
from baseball for several years, after many years of being a
baseball/Expo fanatic.

Tom


30 Sep 2004 20:56:41
rm
Re: Tribute to the Expos

Xavier Leclerc <[email protected] > wrote:
>
> Montreal had a franchise in the International League for many decades
> until approx. 1960. Jackie Robinson made his professional debut with
> the Montreal Royals. In times where Black people were chased by mobs
> in the USA, Montrealer were running after Robinson not to hang him,
> but to embrace him. He is still the most spectacular player who ever
> played in Montreal.

No, that would be Andre Dawson.

cordially, as always,

rm


30 Sep 2004 21:15:57
Edward Curtis
Re: Tribute to the Expos

Whatever the facts may be in this case (I will leave it to those more
knowledgeable than I to discuss), the loss of the Expos is a loss of part
of my childhood. I have always been primarily a Tigers fan, since I grew
up in Detroit, but the same year I started seriously following the Tigers
(1982), I also adopted the Expos as my favorite National League team,
since their games were televised by the CBC station across the river in
Windsor.

Unfortunately, I never got to attend a game in person involving the
Expos, even with them as the visiting team. (This despite attending
games over the years in 4 different National League cities -- Cincinnati,
Pittsburgh, Denver and Los Angeles.)

Edward


30 Sep 2004 21:49:46
Pete Panaro
Re: Tribute to the Expos

>Subject: Tribute to the Expos
>From: [email protected] (Xavier Leclerc)
>Date: 9/30/2004 9:44 AM Eastern Standard Time
>Message-id: <[email protected]>
>
>Americans contend that Montreal is solely a hockey city and that
>baseball had no place there. Let me set the record straight.
>
>Montreal had a franchise in the International League for many decades
>until approx. 1960. Jackie Robinson made his professional debut with
>the Montreal Royals. In times where Black people were chased by mobs
>in the USA, Montrealer were running after Robinson not to hang him,
>but to embrace him. He is still the most spectacular player who ever
>played in Montreal.
>
>The Expos appeared in 1969 and in the 70's they were one of the best
>franchises in baseball, churning out talented players: Gary Carter,
>Steve Rogers, André Dawson, Warren Cromartie, Bill Gullickson, Charlie
>Lea, Andres Galaraga, Ellis Valentine, Tim Raines, etc. They were
>serious contenders to the Eastern Division pennant, losing at the last
>game of the 1979 and 1980 seasons to eventual World Series champions,
>the Phillies and the Pirates. They clenched the pennant in 1981,
>losing the National League final at the last game against the Dodgers
>on a heart-breaking homerun by Rick Monday.
>
>In this purportedly only-hockey city, the Expos drew during many years
>almost 3
>million people to Olympic Stadium. Fans were chanting in the stands
>and guys like Gary Carter and Tim Raines were superstars and national
>heroes. Then free-agency started to break the neck of this original
>franchise.
>
>Salaries escalated in such a way that the Montreal market could not
>bear it
>anymore. Canadian currency had dropped down by approx. 40% compared to
>the US
>dollar, a considerable toll for the Expos who payed their players in
>USD. The TV and radio market was not comparable to NY or LA. The Expos
>had not the backbone to pay their stars in a way to compete with the
>Mets, the Red Sox or the Dodgers.
>
>In 1994, they still had the best record in baseball when the strike
>broke out. The new work contract did not have a salary cap and the
>Expos were doomed to loose all their all-star players. So they made a
>fire sale. Marquis Grissom, Ken Hill, Jeff Fassero, John Wetteland,
>David Segui, Henry Rodriguez were all traded for minor league players.
>Later Larry Walker, future batting champion, was lost to the Colorado
>Rockies. Eventually, in the years to come, every star was to be
>traded, including the Cy Young award winner, Pedro Martinez. The team
>dropped to last place. The message was clear to the fans: Montreal
>could not support a winning team and the Expos were doomed to be a
>second rate franchise. Fans were fed up and deserted Olympic Stadium.
>
>Now the Expos have left Montreal forever. I know American fans don't
>give a damn about it. But what happened in Montreal will repeat sooner
>or later in smaller american markets, if baseball doesn't change.
>Think it over.
>
>
>

Sounds like the usual cries about "small market" teams not being able to
compete or profit. I've yet to see the empirical evidence to support such a
claim.





30 Sep 2004 21:57:35
=?iso-8859-1?Q?The_Dave=A9?=
Re: Tribute to the Expos

> Pete Panaro wrote:
> Sounds like the usual cries about "small market" teams not being able
> to compete or profit. I've yet to see the empirical evidence to
> support such a claim.

What kind of evidence would convince you?

--
If Illinois is the "Land of Lincoln", what were they before the Civil
War?


30 Sep 2004 23:03:21
rm
Re: Tribute to the Expos

Pete Panaro <[email protected] > wrote:

>>Now the Expos have left Montreal forever. I know American fans
>>don't give a damn about it. But what happened in Montreal will
>>repeat sooner or later in smaller american markets, if baseball
>>doesn't change. Think it over.

> Sounds like the usual cries about "small market" teams not being
> able to compete or profit. I've yet to see the empirical
> evidence to support such a claim.

You can't see much when your head is jammed up your ass. Canada
has learned through the successes of both our teams is that all it
takes to beat you guys is money. And we have decided that having
beat you twice in a row already, it is no longer necessary to prove
the point.

cordially, as always,

rm


30 Sep 2004 17:12:21
wunnuy
Re: Tribute to the Expos

[email protected] (Xavier Leclerc) wrote in message news:<[email protected] >...
> Americans contend that Montreal is solely a hockey city and that
> baseball had no place there. Let me set the record straight.
>
> Montreal had a franchise in the International League for many decades
> until approx. 1960. Jackie Robinson made his professional debut with
> the Montreal Royals. In times where Black people were chased by mobs
> in the USA, Montrealer were running after Robinson not to hang him,
> but to embrace him. He is still the most spectacular player who ever
> played in Montreal.
>

The Expos also may have produced what could be one of the greatest
players of all time if he continues the way his career has went so
far: Vlad Guerrero.


30 Sep 2004 17:59:38
fan
Re: Tribute to the Expos


"Xavier Leclerc" <[email protected] > wrote in message
news:[email protected]
> Americans contend that Montreal is solely a hockey city and that
> baseball had no place there. Let me set the record straight.
>
> Montreal had a franchise in the International League for many decades
> until approx. 1960. Jackie Robinson made his professional debut with
> the Montreal Royals. In times where Black people were chased by mobs
> in the USA, Montrealer were running after Robinson not to hang him,
> but to embrace him. He is still the most spectacular player who ever
> played in Montreal.
>
> The Expos appeared in 1969 and in the 70's they were one of the best
> franchises in baseball, churning out talented players: Gary Carter,
> Steve Rogers, André Dawson, Warren Cromartie, Bill Gullickson, Charlie
> Lea, Andres Galaraga, Ellis Valentine, Tim Raines, etc. They were
> serious contenders to the Eastern Division pennant, losing at the last
> game of the 1979 and 1980 seasons to eventual World Series champions,
> the Phillies and the Pirates. They clenched the pennant in 1981,
> losing the National League final at the last game against the Dodgers
> on a heart-breaking homerun by Rick Monday.
>
> In this purportedly only-hockey city, the Expos drew during many years
> almost 3
> million people to Olympic Stadium. Fans were chanting in the stands
> and guys like Gary Carter and Tim Raines were superstars and national
> heroes. Then free-agency started to break the neck of this original
> franchise.
>
> Salaries escalated in such a way that the Montreal market could not
> bear it
> anymore. Canadian currency had dropped down by approx. 40% compared to
> the US
> dollar, a considerable toll for the Expos who payed their players in
> USD. The TV and radio market was not comparable to NY or LA. The Expos
> had not the backbone to pay their stars in a way to compete with the
> Mets, the Red Sox or the Dodgers.
>
> In 1994, they still had the best record in baseball when the strike
> broke out. The new work contract did not have a salary cap and the
> Expos were doomed to loose all their all-star players. So they made a
> fire sale. Marquis Grissom, Ken Hill, Jeff Fassero, John Wetteland,
> David Segui, Henry Rodriguez were all traded for minor league players.
> Later Larry Walker, future batting champion, was lost to the Colorado
> Rockies. Eventually, in the years to come, every star was to be
> traded, including the Cy Young award winner, Pedro Martinez. The team
> dropped to last place. The message was clear to the fans: Montreal
> could not support a winning team and the Expos were doomed to be a
> second rate franchise. Fans were fed up and deserted Olympic Stadium.
>
> Now the Expos have left Montreal forever. I know American fans don't
> give a damn about it. But what happened in Montreal will repeat sooner
> or later in smaller american markets, if baseball doesn't change.
> Think it over.


I know you're generalizing when you say 'American fans don't give a damn
about it.', but I think I should let you know, I give a damn.

What Selig & MLB did to Montreal & their Expos fans is wrong. The strike
was wrong, and the fans that didn't return were not wrong for doing so.

I always had a lot of respect for the Expos, their organization, their great
minor league system, and their fans. I'm only sorry I was never able to
make a game at Olympic Stadium so I could echo my sentiments to Montreal
fans in person.

I will never forget the Expos, and their great fan base. They showed time
and again they cared about the team, even when it was obvious MLB cared
nothing about their fans.

Montreal and baseball fans thereof, my hat is off to you.




01 Oct 2004 17:39:25
Tom MacIntyre
Re: Tribute to the Expos

On Thu, 30 Sep 2004 20:56:41 GMT, rm <[email protected] > wrote:

>Xavier Leclerc <[email protected]> wrote:
>>
>> Montreal had a franchise in the International League for many decades
>> until approx. 1960. Jackie Robinson made his professional debut with
>> the Montreal Royals. In times where Black people were chased by mobs
>> in the USA, Montrealer were running after Robinson not to hang him,
>> but to embrace him. He is still the most spectacular player who ever
>> played in Montreal.
>
>No, that would be Andre Dawson.
>
>cordially, as always,
>
>rm

Has Barry Bonds never played in Montreal? I know, I know...we mean
played for Montreal.

Tom


01 Oct 2004 17:41:03
Tom MacIntyre
Re: Tribute to the Expos

On Thu, 30 Sep 2004 23:03:21 GMT, rm <[email protected] > wrote:

>Pete Panaro <[email protected]> wrote:
>
>>>Now the Expos have left Montreal forever. I know American fans
>>>don't give a damn about it. But what happened in Montreal will
>>>repeat sooner or later in smaller american markets, if baseball
>>>doesn't change. Think it over.
>
>> Sounds like the usual cries about "small market" teams not being
>> able to compete or profit. I've yet to see the empirical
>> evidence to support such a claim.
>
>You can't see much when your head is jammed up your ass. Canada
>has learned through the successes of both our teams is that all it
>takes to beat you guys is money. And we have decided that having
>beat you twice in a row already, it is no longer necessary to prove
>the point.
>
>cordially, as always,
>
>rm

Could've been a three-peat for Canada...any conspiracy-minded people
out there? Imagine if the poor hapless Expos had beaten the mighty
Yankees... :-)

Tom


01 Oct 2004 17:41:47
Tom MacIntyre
Re: Tribute to the Expos

On 30 Sep 2004 17:12:21 -0700, [email protected] (wunnuy) wrote:

>[email protected] (Xavier Leclerc) wrote in message news:<[email protected]>...
>> Americans contend that Montreal is solely a hockey city and that
>> baseball had no place there. Let me set the record straight.
>>
>> Montreal had a franchise in the International League for many decades
>> until approx. 1960. Jackie Robinson made his professional debut with
>> the Montreal Royals. In times where Black people were chased by mobs
>> in the USA, Montrealer were running after Robinson not to hang him,
>> but to embrace him. He is still the most spectacular player who ever
>> played in Montreal.
>>
>
>The Expos also may have produced what could be one of the greatest
>players of all time if he continues the way his career has went so
>far: Vlad Guerrero.

Did they also develop RJ?

Tom