So apparently Bud Selig has passed some sort of addendum to the rules so that people whose last names start with a "C" and were born on August 11, 1984 are ineligible for the batting title. This is presumably to avoid the embarrassment of the taboo guy finishing first in batting average, although it does it by generating yet another story about how the taboo guy is going to finish first in batting average.
I suppose it's not quite the same thing as not counting Rose as the hits leader or Bonds as the HR leader or something like that. The Melkman, as you all probably know, finished up one PA short; the rules in that case call for outs to be added to get him up to the line, and Selig's fix is to say you can't do that in this case.
Of course, no one really cares who MLB considers the "batting" champ. Presumably baseball-reference will list it properly, and at any rate however anyone wants to count it Melky Cabrerra will have posted a .346 BA in 501 PAs this season. He won't "really" have had 502 PAs either way.
The solution, of course, is pure Selig -- an ad hoc fix to something that happened to come to his attention and which he decided was a problem.
What's really amazing is how resilient baseball is in the face of all of it. Baseball is, alas, worse off, but hardly ruined...well, I should say, I guess, that we baseball fans are worse off, but the game itself -- and I'm talking about the MLB version of it -- remains wildly, out-of-control popular. And to Selig's credit, he really did learn his lesson from the 1994-1995 fiasco, which is a hell of a lot more than you can say for the people who run the NHL, apparently. I don't really know how to weigh the balance between losing the end of 1994 vs. labor peace since, but the upside of that is probably a bigger deal than all the stupid format changes and getting rid of the league offices and switching teams from one league to another and....blech. I can't stand him.
Anyway, the Giants magic number is down to two, so what am I going to be crabby about? As long as I don't think about Bud Selig, I'm pretty much fine.