How to improve baseball. . .
MATTESON - When you think of baseball, you immediately think of warm weather, apple pie, statistics and tradition. Now those are the favorable thoughts that come to mindÖ on the other side of the plate, many people think of stubbornness, lack of parity, egoistic, vain, and boring. For as much progress as there has been in sports, there are still some old practices and notions that ought to be reexamined in Major League Baseball (MLB).
A major reason for the perception of this sport begins with consistency. Right now with almost 30 games into the season, you know the Yankees are going to be around for a playoff run, so will Boston in the American league. In the National league, Cardinals, Braves and maybe the Dodgers. But in short, many teams donít have a prayer, such as Royals, Nationals, Orioles, and even the beloved Cubs, to name a few, going down the stretch this fall. Needless to say some type of balanced payroll structure is required for starters.
Plus, the inability to arrive at games early to tailgate and/or to shag balls during batting practice is prohibited. This one seems like a no brainer. At most ballparks, the gates open for fans just in time for them to see the home team walk off the field after batting practice. Forget the extra cost of having ushers hang out for another hour or two. Let fans into the ballpark early enough to watch the home team taking batting practice. This leads right into a grass root issue when the MLB shuts organizations out by putting sanctions on recreation teams (i.e., Little Leagues) from using their likeness in tournament playÖ For instance, kids can not wear a Cubs hat or uniform nor can they be called that name during tournament play - click here for more details on thisÖ Why? Kids do not understand merchandising or licensing, so why can't they imitate their favorite team and players? Go figure!
From these distractions, and arrogant practices, you have a trickle down effect on the sport of baseball where an entire generation will lose interest. The best example of this is when you donít see kids playing baseball (softball) in parks as they use toÖ I can clearly remember playing all types of baseball activities from sun up to sun down as a kidÖ from strike out to running bases to long-ball catch to collecting baseball cards.
Another key issue is the pace of the game which does not entertain this generation of multi-taskers. Today's youth seem to need constant entertainment, and the leisurely pace of baseball, with no time clock, or maximum number of foul balls, does not fit the bill.
Montreal is "the last residue of contraction"'
Declaring the All Star game a tie; subsequently awarding the winner home field advantage in the World Series.
Claimed he wasn't aware of rampant steroid use in baseball; before BALCO.
Claimed he wasn't aware of rampant steroid use in baseball; after BALCO
Continues to refer to current state of baseball as "A Renaissance"; World Series TV ratings hit a record low
So Mr. Selig, we (Amateur Sports) prepared several questions we hope you can answer for us in order to improve your beloved sport:
there a DH for the American League and not for the National League? Why
not incorporate both?
do pitchers have to bath ninth?
the All-star game, why not let position players pitch?
do managers where uniforms?
Research from the Hall of Fame, they believe that the last manager to wear a suit was Burt Shotton of the Brooklyn Dodgers, who last managed a game in 1950.
No other sport has this convention. Can you imagine if NBA coaches were forced to put on the long shorts and muscle shirts, exposing their bleach-white legs and spindly arms? What about NHL coaches put on cheap suits instead of donning the teamís gear and doing pirouettes at center ice.
the lines of managers, why are coaches called managers?
Why not play all Saturday games during
not start playoff games earlier?
are baseball fieldsí different sizes?
Mr. Commissioner, these are some random thoughts we came up with but we believe they are essential to the forward performance of your organization moving forward. We look forward to your response.