A regulation published last month requires sports teams to give the government details of their contracts with staff and corporate sponsors...The sports law requires government approval of any contract with athletes aged between 16 and 18. America’s Major League Baseball (MLB) clubs routinely sign Venezuelan prospects at 16. Miguel Bermúdez, the director of the National Sports Institute, says the government merely wants to ensure the contracts provide for schooling (which only one of the 30 MLB teams requires) and compensation in case of injury (which none offers). That is reasonable enough. But if the law chokes off the flow of Venezuelans to MLB, the biggest stage for the country’s national game, in the eyes of fans that might undermine the sporting gains under Mr Chávez.