The Texas Ranger nominated Dallas Mavericks power forward Dirk Nowitzki to throw out the opening pitch at one of their World Series home games. And why not? Dirk is a Dallas sports icon, and a historic figure as the first European to win an NBA MVP. His team, the Mavericks, is also the reigning NBA champions and thus an excellent good luck charm for a fellow Metroplex squad.
But Major League Baseball vetoed the idea out of respect for the NBA owners’ lockout of its players.
Note that this kind of “secondary strike” is illegal when done on the labor side. In other words, if one union goes on strike at a firm somewhere, other unions aren’t allowed to engage in solidaristic boycotts of the firm if it decides to stay in business by hiring replacement workers. The teamsters can’t refuse to make deliveries. This ban on secondary strikes deprives unions of the potentially powerful tool of cross-sector solidarity. For political purposes, unions can team up and collaborate, but in the basic world of labor negotiations they can’t. But when the NBA owners decide they won’t stage any games until players agree to accept lower pay, other rich types across the country come to their assistance and it’s all perfectly legal.