1999-2010

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

AN URGENT CALL TO THE FRIENDS AND FAMILY OF LARRY BARAS! His emailed message to Our Man Elli has us worried about his state of mind and well-being

"Elli,
you have totally
destroyed me.
You win.
Congratulations.
Won't you stop now?
Please?"
--email message
from IBL founder Larry Baras
to Our Man Elli in Israel


Someone please check on Larry Baras and make sure that he's all right.

Seriously.

The story of the implosion of the Israel Baseball League, the lawsuit against its founder Larry Baras, resignations of its leadership and the controversial creation of the rival Israel Professional Baseball League all played out exclusively on Tabloid Baby for months, but now that the story was ripped off without attribution by the Associated Press, it is this morning spreading around the world and beyond, from Israel to New York to Paris to Baghdad-- to the headline news being beamed to the shuttle up in space.

It's a story about baseball. And business. And the history of a nation. It's also the story of man, Larry Baras, who according to those who know him, is a hardworking, well-intentioned Zionist who wanted to bring a good thing to Israel and "who ran to replace a popsicle for a child... who had perspiration marks up and down... making it all happen on opening day, stress and sweat oozing out of his pores... picking up left behind trash towards the end of the game..."

That is why this response to Our Man Elli's request for a comment on the latest turn of events is so disturbing to us.

It read like a suicide note. Or at the very least, a cry for help.

For Larry Baras to blame Our Man Elli for his predicament is unfair and baseless.

Elli, you have totally destroyed me...

Our Man Elli wrote a balanced news article about the ups and downs of the first season of the Israel Baseball League. Yes, that article in the days after the season's last out led to the first widespread negative publicity the IBL had received since its creation. But remember, in midseason, financial problems caused the cancellation of the league's broadcasting deal with Sport5 cable TV, players had threatened a strike over late paychecks and living conditions, and manager Ken Holtzman quit spectacularly. Later, players and vendors complained of bounced checks. Native Israelis complained that they were not appreciated by the league.

Our Man Elli had nothing to do with the lawsuit filed against Larry Baras by an investor in his stuffed bagel company. The banking group that was to provide him a bridge loan canceled the deal because Larry Baras did not inform them of the federal securities fraud suit.

The IBL commissioner and advisers who walked away last week did not do so because of Ell Wohlgelernter's or Tabloid Baby's reporting. They did so, because they "were distressed that the league's finances and business operations were not handled in a more professional manner and, in particular, that the league was unwilling to provide relevant financial information concerning its operating results. They also noted significant staffing and other organizational problems that have beset the league since inception."

You win. Congratulatons (sic).

You win? Win what? Tabloid Baby is a journalistic cooperative and forum. No one gets paid to express their views on the is site. We, and everybody wins, if the league's problems are repaired and the ump shouts "Play ball!" in Israel in 2008.

Won't you stop now? Please?

It doesn't work like that. We are journalists. We follow a story. And as a story develops, we report its twists and turns wherever it leads us. And this particular path concerns us greatly. We urge Larry Baras' friends and family members to give him a call, bring him some chicken soup-- see that he's all right.

We do not want his or anyone's blood on our hands.

For the record:

THE FOLLOWING IS THE OFFICIAL RECORD OF THE RESPONSES TO OUR MAN ELLI'S E-MAIL REQUEST FOR COMMENT FROM LARRY BARAS:

FROM OUR MAN ELLI, Mon, 19 Nov 2007 09:23:23 -0800 (PST)
hi larry,
would you care to comment on the law suit?
elli wohlgelernter

FROM LARRY BARAS, AT IBL EMAIL ADDRESS, 3 minutes later:
is there a new lawsuit or do you mean the one I know about?

FROM OUR MAN ELLI, 8 minutes later:
blacher's.
also, to the board members' claim of non-transparency. i'm writing a story and thought, even though a small chance, that you might want to comment.

FROM LARRY BARAS, 32 hours later:
Tue, 20 Nov 2007 20:54:08 -0500 (EST)
Elli, you have totally destroyed me. You win. Congratulatons. (sic) Won't you stop now? Please?


( UPDATE: Last night, Baras was reached at his home by WCVB-TV. He said the claims in the lawsuit against him are "absolutely, 100 percent, not true," that his SJR Foods is still "a profitable, functioning company of which (Blacher) is a shareholder," that Blacher could still see a return on her investment, and that "the goal is still to sell the company and distribute the proceeds to the shareholders." Baras denied using any money invested in SJR Foods to prop up the baseball league, which he said will continue to operate "despite the distractions.")

23 comments:

Anonymous said...

Your man Elli has single-handedly managed to completely destroy the dream of baseball in Israel by taking normal growing/starting missteps and blowing them all out of proportion, and then trumpeting irrelevant lawsuits as though they involved the IBL. Congratulations. I hope none of you ever gets to see another baseball game for the rest of your worthless lives. Self-righteous, sanctimonious yellow scandal-mongering muckrakers. You wouldn't know a real journalist if he bit you on the ass.

iblemetrician said...

There's an interesting peek into league finances in this preseason story:

http://www.marketwatch.com/news/story/field-dreams-israel-baseball-league/story.aspx?guid=%7BA7E349DC-E883-4912-B84D-0B633E549169%7D

Make no mistake: Baras isn't in this only for altruism or to advance geopolitics. It's a for-profit enterprise, and he'd like to see it run even modestly in the black from the first pitch.

...Baras has kept his expectations modest and his budget tight. He and investors capitalized the league with $1 million. The 120 players are paid $2,000 each for the entire season.

...Baras outsourced the food and collectibles concessions, and Kibbutz Kfar ha'Yaroq, just north of Tel Aviv, provided accommodations for the players at a reasonable price.

As to revenue, CEO Berger, who is 40, says the business is based on sales of tickets and merchandise, a cut of the concessions revenue, and advertisements on the Web site.

seymour hersh said...

Anonymous #1, you deluded asshole, the lawsuit isn't irrevevant when the g-ddamn ibl is cited in it. The New York effing Times and International Herald Tribune are covering this "out of proportion" situation.

These boys deserve the Pulitzer and you deserve to live in a country where there is no freedom of the press.

Anonymous said...

I have been saying, since you started this very long line of articles about Israeli baseball, that it was all out of proportion. I still believe that, and it appears it is even more out of proportion than even I thought. Your man Elli has gone completely out of his way to destroy that man's life, over something as completely meaningless as baseball, and you have whined incessantly because the story was picked up by mainstream outlets and you weren't given credit. So what, big deal, who cares. You don't deserve credit, as far as I can tell, since other journalists could have picked up the story from their own sources. Nevertheless, your crying about credit has only given you an excuse to keep demonizing this man.

Look back at the archives. Most of what you have posted here in past months was nothing but harassment of this man, when it appears he has done nothing criminal. Half the time you just rehashed the same old tired accusations, disguised as "news". Your readers (including me) tried to point it out to you, but you ignored them and the harassment just got worse.

Now that you have driven this poor man to desperation through your endless harassment, you are backtracking to make it appear as if you were merely "reporting" "news", when anyone who has followed this blog knows differently, and recognizes that you were harassing someone for the sake of harassment. You should be thoroughly ashamed of yourselves.

Anonymous said...

There is a story in Israel that Larry can not come back to Israel because he will be served with additional law suits and thus not be allowed to leave the country until his debts are paid.



Can anyone comment on this.

Also before Larry was in the bagel business he was in the securities business. What was the nature of his leaving that business.

Were there any improprieties?

Anonymous said...

Hey , we in the 'ball' games here in israel know elli, literally a joke!!! the guy is really a houshold joke here in israel.

elli, those who know you don't respect you here in the holyland and you make yourself out to be a journalist,:-)

incredible what people think about themselves

Anonymous said...

let the anonymous schmear campaign against eli continue!

everyone knows hes a great journalist and barras's people write the bad stuff and dont sign their names.
your the joke....

Anonymous said...

Can we have some lox in this "anonymous schmear campaign"

Anonymous said...

yeah like all the shmear against baras was written by all the 'baras' friends.

Who ever you are that wrote about elli the great journalist, you must be someone who does know the guy, we do:-) don't we elli. cmon tell them that you are also not liked here, you know that, be honest for once:-)

oh yeah, guys take a look at this and tell me someone said it was going to be easy!!!

http://www.holylandhardball.com/trailer.html

Anonymous said...

hey hersch or whatever, the lady got in in 1999 hmmm let's see now IBL - 1999 don't think so. But wait , in the news what does she see? baras on TV saying he is working hard in getting the season started , Pro Ball hmmmm!! maybe there are millions of dollars. Now is the right time to hit him with the suit because in AMERICA we can sue for anything.

give me a break mister deluded , did you get hit in the head with a baseball or are you just showing us your major in college duh@!!!!

Anonymous said...

remember and listen fools!!!!
http://www.holylandhardball.com/trailer.html

Anonymous said...

Ely you ought to go to hell for what you have done.you will never amount to anything but being a zero. stop pinning your hopes on this blown out of proportaion story find someone or seomething else to demonize to make yourself look like a something
Isnt there something going on in israel other than this> Or does Rosen or rolehouse pay you to much to keep focusing on this one? or does stupid young andrew wilson, give the crappy info?

The putzes who are starting a new league ought to be sent to hell as well actually they are already on their way

they have fed this blog foder for weeks and let them be exposed for what they are. guess who will be the in house writer for their proposed new league ? ely. they indeed have sent the gas into the balloon of this blog and shitty eli stories. right alan gardner, andrew wilson, jeff rosen and rolehouse?>
YOu want to make the IBL look bad so you can come marching in as the solution saving the summer for the children of Israel. FOlks, dont let them put that wool over your head. They are all a bunch of evil creepy zeros . There are thousands of people who had a great summer. let them enjoy their memories you have tried to destroy something amazing and hopefully you will not succeed in tearing down the IBL or Larry Baras. you have already done so much evil. The fact that you would publish that letter from Larry shows how low you beasts will go to try and get some acclaim at any cost. Tear it down so you will look like saviors. Cannot wait til the announcement that you will be saving baseball. It is so sleezoid.

I will make personally sure that each one you assholes are investigated and every teenage child you tried to screw and every whore you grabbed will be a part of someones tabloid . watch your mail. Just watch me.
It is coming!!!!!!Better stop now!
Jeff Rosen, shall we dig up pictures of the children in hospitals?
Whomever is looking for more background on Larry is simply seeking to coerce him into quitting and hurt him more deeply. he has tried his best.
BE HONEST ABOUT YOUR BEEFS AND WHY YOU ARE ALL WRITING THIS STUFF AND MAKING IT REPEATED AND LOUD. YOU ALL HAVE PERSONAL GOALS HERE! AND YOU ARE TRYING TO KILL A GOOD THING A GOOD PERSON IN THE PROCESS. YOU ARE THE LOWEST OF THE LOW>
SUPPORT THE IBL!!!

Anonymous said...

Ely,

We love the coverage! Give us more.
I tune in to tabloid baby everyday just to see what will happen next.

You should pitch this to the networks. There is nothing better on.

Even better you can suggest to the IBL that this is a great way for them to get out of financial trouble.

All you have to do is follow Larry Baras around.

Watch him give out loli-pops to kids, bungle meetings with potential investors, compose untruthful emails to con people out of money, negotiate with players, bounce checks, give his son funny jobs to do and watch him screw up.

You get the idea. The shows will make you piss in your pants.

Let us know what you think?

Anonymous said...

your a fat jerk

Anonymous said...

robyn Baras

has eaten one too many bagels.

the snag mister said...

SJR Foods.... explains my serious gas problem. YOUR GOING DOWN BARAS!

weloveisrael101 said...

Elli,
you have descraced the jewish people and Israel. If we believed in hell you would be going there.
ASSHOLE!!!!!!!!!!!
Also, stop mooching off your family ASSHOLE

weloveisrael101 said...

My bad I mead Larry

Anonymous said...

everyone here get a freaking life

Anonymous said...

Elli, You are a dispicable human being for wreaking havok on such a wonderful man, Larry Baras.

Harry Houdini said...

We love Larry

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