The source of the Red Mist which Descended O'er Mine Eyes yesterday, Derrick Goold, isn't backing down from how the Astros aren't respecting the competitive nature of Base Ball.
The 2nd link takes you to the Comments section of Goold's post, where he stands by his premise:
I think you could make the case that the current Astros are 119-losses bad. They may not get there because they played a few months before the Grand Sell-Off. But as the team is setup right now, can you think of a worse team you've seen in the past decade? The badminton example was of a team trying to throw games as strategy. Clearly, the Astros aren't doing that -- but the are losing games, they are aware that they aren't competitive (see Luhnow's letter to season ticket holders), and they will impact the standings as a result. I'm not a Cardinals fan. I'm a baseball fan. That's why I wonder ... Is this good for baseball? It's obviously good for the Cardinals (or should be). But it's not good for the league. That's just me. Call it contrived or ludicrous if you want. I just felt it should be discussed.
And to another commenter:
Maybe baseball should care about an overmatched team tilting the playoff picture.
2011 was the first time since 2003 that the Pirates didn't finish in 5th or 6th in the NL Central. Since 1994 (18 full seasons), the Pirates finished in last or next-to-last in the division 12 times. What's better for baseball? A team that bumbles its way through free agency, drafting and developing for a generation, or a team that blows it up for half a season in order to get better as quickly as possible?
If I was Selig, I'd get a stylist. Then a publicist. But then I'd look at this question. Any Pirates fan will tell you that the sun had not risen in Pittsburgh since 1992 - (quick aside: When we throw out some sort of snarky tweet about losing, there are a number of Pirates fans that say, "Hey, don't talk to me about losing!" They're the Uphill-Both-Ways-Through-Knee-Deep-Snow fans. It's almost like they're so insecure about winning that they keep reminding us about what it means to REALLY lose.) - until this past April. Yet the Pirates impacted eighteen pennant races. The Astros have negatively impacted two (2011 and 2012).
Baseball is a zero-sum game. A team wins and a team loses. For a team to win 100 games, there has to be 100 instances of another team losing to that team. It's not bad for baseball, it's bad for that franchise, and it's bad for that franchise's fans. If MLB stayed out of how the Pirates ran themselves from 1993-2010, there's no reason to mess with the Astros.