You know that great scene in Moneyball when Brad Pitt (who's playing Oakland A's General Manager Billy Beane, is explaining to all of those grizzled veteran scouts that all he cares about is a player's on base percentage?

Here it is for a refresher:

The scouts are saying, "he's got a bad swing!" or "his mechanics are awful!" And Beane says, "But he gets on base."

And the scouts say, "But he's got an ugly girlfriend that means he doesn't have any confidence!"

But he gets on base.

"Yeah but his jawline isn't..."

But he gets on base.

Major League Baseball just got a proposal from the Larry H Miller group yesterday that Salt Lake is very interested in bringing a Major League Baseball team to Utah.

Now MLB people and Rob Manfred are going to look at Salt Lake and say:

"That's a dinky little town, you need more population!"

"The city has no personality, a baseball city needs a bridge or it needs trains!"

"Baseball needs drunk fans and gamblers and guys smoking cigars!"

And Salt Lake's response should be: "But Salt Lake loves sports." 

The number one thing about Utah's culture that separates it from Nashville, and Charlotte, and Portland is that Utah LOVES sports. If you walked around Salt Lake and the surrounding areas down to Provo and up to Ogden and asked people who Mark McGwire is...

Or name two Red Sox players from the 2004 World Series team...

Or who was the Dodger's longtime announcer...

You'd have a much higher percentage of Utahns who knew the answers to those questions than if you asked people in Nashville, or Portland. And that's not because Utah has a rooting interest in any of those teams. It's because they are a 'sports people'.

So MLB, don't get hung up on population or history or what the backdrop of the stadium is going to look like. What matters to a team being sustainable in any given market is if the population is truly sports crazed, and Utah is your best bet.

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