If Major League Baseball thinks it will get new viewers because of these rule changes? They’re mistaken. For the sports radio hosts that say their kids can’t pay attention to things for long periods of time, then that’s on you. Be a better parent. When a doctor is in surgery, he has to pay laser-focused attention and so do many other jobs in this world that should never be done by a robot.
Just because you may cut the time of games down, doesn’t mean you are seeing a better game. As an example, do you want to see a guy get struck out because the pitch clock ran out with the bases loaded down 1-0 in the ninth? Do you want that to decide the game? I get that the players will now have to change, but expecting them to do that 100% in spring training isn’t enough time.
Some of my favorite baseball memories were created in extra innings. Baseball has made sure to cut that out with the ghost runner. Again, if the game is too long for you, turn it off or go home. But not letting these games play out to a natural conclusion goes against what the fundamental of baseball is. The beauty of baseball was there was no clock. When the game ended, whenever that was, it was meant to be. It wasn’t because the sport artificially changed something to suit a very small, insignificant audience.
Baseball has a history like no other. Good and bad but long and memorable. I heard someone say the NBA does it right. They only look at today. Is that right? No, that’s just the way they do it because they’ve done a mediocre job of honoring the past. The NFL has long spans without plays happening too, but they don’t get the same heat as baseball. Why? Because it’s once a week, so there isn’t that much effort required to be a fan of that sport.
Following baseball is a way of life. It’s part of your daily routine, and the announcers essentially become your friends that you’ve invited into your living room to talk baseball. It’s the best reality show out there. Things happen every day in baseball that you’ve never seen before. No other sport is like that.
The further baseball drifts from its history and its roots the further down it will fall. Baseball has lousy marketing. They have some amazing stars that never get any press until the All-Star game rolls around. Baseball needs to do a better job of that. Rising ticket prices don’t make baseball the bargain it used to be because there are so many home games. That contributes to emptier stands based on what a family of four can afford. Start tackling those obvious issues. You might be surprised at the results.
photo by del Tufo.