Sportsman's Daily


Economy Forces Blue Jays to Send Pay Checks and Communications via Western Union

Western Union

Look for the Union Cable. That’s how the Blue Jays will survive in 2009.

TORONTO, ONTARIO, CA. (Sportsman’s Daily Wire Service) Even baseball expects to feel it this season. The economy is wrecking havoc on the great American pastime, even though that havoc is playing out north of the border. The Toronto Blue Jays have announced a deal with Western Union to wire their paychecks to their team members.

“It saves us a ton,” said Jays GM J.P. Ricciardi. “We just wire it over, and the delivery boys take it from there. Of course as everyone knows, Western Union stopped delivering telegrams on January 27, 2006. But they negotiated a deal for us to send our transactions via iTelegram, and naturally they get a cut of that. That allows us to get rid of all our computers here. Imagine the savings. I’d love to see the look on Lyle Overbay’s face when some uniformed, pimply-faced 17 year old kid on a bike shows up and tells him he’s been dealt to Japan. Oops, did I just let something out of the bag?”

The advent of the personal computer and internet and more specifically, email, have all but eliminated the need for the telegram, the preferred form of quick communication since the 1850’s. But the nostalgia crazed as well as one professional baseball team on a budget, have suddenly put the telegram back in vogue.

“There’s something kind of romantic about the telegram,” added Ricciardi. “Sure, it’s not as high tech as email, or texting or twittering, or even a simple cell phone call, but at the end of the day, it makes sense. Baseball’s been around for over one hundred and fifty years. The history of the game lends itself to old fashioned communication. There’s something about enjoying a hot dog with your dad at the ballgame, then coming home to discover a telegram awaiting the old man telling him he’s been fired. That’s what America’s all about, even though this is Canada.”

Ricciardi will undergo extensive psychiatric tests this week, though the team’s computer network he personally dismantled over the weekend isn’t expected to be restored until next season.

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