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What the hell is "The" MLB?

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  • What the hell is "The" MLB?

    It's not said "the MLB." It's just "MLB." End rant.
    "No matter how great you were once upon a time — the years go by, and men forget,” - W. A. Phelon in Baseball Magazine in 1915. “Ross Barnes, forty years ago, was as great as Cobb or Wagner ever dared to be. Had scores been kept then as now, he would have seemed incomparably marvelous.”

  • #2
    Put it in the books.

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    • #3
      And where did you hear this from? Someone who's a fan of the NFL or the NBA?
      "It is a simple matter to erect a Hall of Fame, but difficult to select the tenants." -- Ken Smith
      "I am led to suspect that some of the electorate is very dumb." -- Henry P. Edwards
      "You have a Hall of Fame to put people in, not keep people out." -- Brian Kenny
      "There's no such thing as a perfect ballot." -- Jay Jaffe

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      • #4
        Wha an incredibly innocuous thing to get upset about.
        1885 1886 1926 1931 1934 1942 1944 1946 1964 1967 1982 2006 2011

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        • #5
          It's simply because people are in the habit of saying the NFL, the NHL, and the NBA. That's all. If people want to say the MLB, I don't care.
          46 wins to match last year's total

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          • #6
            Originally posted by SamtheBravesFan View Post
            It's simply because people are in the habit of saying the NFL, the NHL, and the NBA. That's all. If people want to say the MLB, I don't care.
            It's not rocket science. The NFL, NHL and NBA refer to leagues (or associations), which can be preceded by the definite article. You can say the National Football League, the National Hockey League, and so on. In baseball, you could also say the NL or the AL, as they also refer to leagues. But MLB does not refer to a league, but to a game or a sport. You could say the game of baseball, but you wouldn't say the baseball, unless you were referring to the ball itself. Just like you might say the game of poker, but not the poker, the game of monopoly, but not the monopoly, or the profession of science, but not the science.

            Words that refer to an activity generally are not modified by an article, definite or indefinite, because the activity isn't considered a discrete entity. A specific baseball league is a discrete entity. Baseball as a game or sport is not, unless it's specifically referred to as a game or a sport.
            Last edited by Stolensingle; 02-19-2020, 07:51 PM.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Chadwick View Post
              And where did you hear this from? Someone who's a fan of the NFL or the NBA?
              I would like to know this as well.

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              • #8
                The preceding NFL refers to "League". That's fine. "The League"
                The preceding MLB would refer to "Baseball", which doesn't make sense. "The Baseball"? That's like saying "the professional football".
                Even if we take MLB to be the name of an organization... we don't say "the NASA", but we do say "the NRA". It's a matter of convention, I suppose.

                I'm just glad we can have civil discussion about this at the Baseball Fever.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by dgarza View Post
                  we don't say "the NASA", but we do say "the NRA". It's a matter of convention, I suppose.
                  People say the NRA, again, because it refers to an association, which is a specific entity. People also say the National Aeronautical and Space Agency.They rarely if ever say that phrase without a preceding "the". So why don't we say the NASA? I think it's a matter of having reverence or respect for certain institutions. NASA became famous when America's space program took off in the 60s. It was a household word, or term. Preceding it by "the" would imply that it was just another institution, liked by some and hated by others. The NRA is in that latter class, and so is the IRS, though some people say IRS without "the", usually implying, again, respect--not necessarily for its benefits, but for its power over individuals.

                  For the same reason, most Americans say USA, while foreigners are more likely to say the USA. If you're an American abroad, you will tell people you're from the USA, but if you're home in America, you usually drop the "the" when referring to it--e.g., crowds chanting at political rallies.

                  Sometimes the usage goes against common grammatical rules, precisely in order to shock or emphasize. Trump has often been referred to as the Donald. Just because you normally would not precede a proper noun with "the", doing so emphasizes importance, or something unique or unusual.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Stolensingle View Post

                    People say the NRA, again, because it refers to an association, which is a specific entity. People also say the National Aeronautical and Space Agency.They rarely if ever say that phrase without a preceding "the". So why don't we say the NASA?
                    It could also have to do with how we pronounce each acronym. When we say NRA, we are simply naming each letter. With NASA, we pronounce it phonetically like it's a proper name. Normally we don't add "the" in front of phonetically pronounced proper names. There may be exceptions, but for the most part this is how we approach things.

                    Examples: we say the FBI, the BBC; but we don't say the ASCII, the NATO.

                    We do however say the USA or the US, to touch on your other point. For example, I would say "Here in the USA, we play American football" or "The USA is located in North America".
                    USA is spelled out in letters, not phonetically pronounced.
                    Last edited by dgarza; 02-19-2020, 09:52 PM.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Stolensingle View Post

                      It's not rocket science. The NFL, NHL and NBA refer to leagues (or associations), which can be preceded by the definite article. You can say the National Football League, the National Hockey League, and so on. In baseball, you could also say the NL or the AL, as they also refer to leagues. But MLB does not refer to a league, but to a game or a sport. You could say the game of baseball, but you wouldn't say the baseball, unless you were referring to the ball itself. Just like you might say the game of poker, but not the poker, the game of monopoly, but not the monopoly, or the profession of science, but not the science.

                      Words that refer to an activity generally are not modified by an article, definite or indefinite, because the activity isn't considered a discrete entity. A specific baseball league is a discrete entity. Baseball as a game or sport is not, unless it's specifically referred to as a game or a sport.
                      Very informative. Kudos for using "discrete" not "discreet." I knew Basball Fever had intelligent posters Since we are on this topic, my pet peeve is the number of posters on social media that spell the word "lose" as "loose" and use "me" rather than "I" as part of the subject. How hard is this? While it makes me cringe, I'm more forgiving of confusing "complimentary" for "complementary." Sadly, so many journalists don't seem to know the difference. The worst part is that if you politely point this out you are a grammar Nazi!

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by 3rdGenCub View Post
                        my pet peeve is the number of posters on social media that spell the word "lose" as "loose"
                        And i thought I was the only one who noticed that. At some point, a lot of people started doing this, and i suppose if enough people spell it that way, it may become the official spelling. But yeah, I've always wondered what was going on.

                        and use "me" rather than "I" as part of the subject.
                        Haha, as Mike Trout's saying "me going up to the plate, knowing what was coming?".

                        Originally posted by dgarza View Post

                        It could also have to do with how we pronounce each acronym. When we say NRA, we are simply naming each letter. With NASA, we pronounce it phonetically like it's a proper name. Normally we don't add "the" in front of phonetically pronounced proper names. There may be exceptions, but for the most part this is how we approach things.
                        Good point, that hadn't occurred to me. We say the UN, but not the UNICEF or the UNESCO.
                        Last edited by Stolensingle; 02-20-2020, 01:49 AM.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Stolensingle View Post
                          Sometimes the usage goes against common grammatical rules, precisely in order to shock or emphasize. Trump has often been referred to as the Donald. Just because you normally would not precede a proper noun with "the", doing so emphasizes importance, or something unique or unusual.
                          That monicker though is a play on the mafia term for a head of a family, The Don. For example, Don Vito Corleone.

                          Trump’s real estate developments were in the Atlantic City, NJ (including a couple of casinos and entertainment venues) and New York City areas, hotbeds for mafia activity.

                          Besides his abrasive, and terrible boss-like demeanor, he has often been accused of having mafia ties (never mind having mafia family like dealings when it comes to certain issues). So that is where that monicker comes from.
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                          • #14
                            It also bugs me when I look at the on-screen TV guide on Spectrum Cable, and it lists the ball game as MLB Baseball. That's redundant, that's Major League Baseball Baseball.
                            They call me Mr. Baseball. Not because of my love for the game; because of all the stitches in my head.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by SteveJRogers View Post

                              That monicker though is a play on the mafia term for a head of a family, The Don. For example, Don Vito Corleone.
                              Yes, this.

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