Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Listen Up, Bud Selig

Dear Bud Selig,

Baseball has been dying a slow, painful death for a while now, and my fear is that if I continue witnessing this crime in silence any longer, I might be charged as an accessory. I know you are probably still cleaning up the mess you made from pissing yourself in pure elation at the events on the last day of the regular season, but let's face the facts. As much as it would make me feel all warm and fuzzy inside, you can't rely on the Boston Red Sox and the Atlanta Braves absolutely forgetting how to play baseball in the month of September year in and year out. So, this, Bud, is for you.

1. Don't compete with the NFL.

Just don't. You might think you are just as good a commissioner as Roger Goodell, but you'd be frighteningly wrong. Mr. Goodell is so out of your league that there's a better chance that he knows my name than yours. As things stand now, the baseball postseason is in October, right smack in the middle of the NFL season. The sad thing is, even playoff baseball can't overcome regular season football. So before you utter anything related to "bu-bu-but it's America's favorite pastime," heed my advice and save me the effort of having to slap you back to reality. Instead of starting the baseball season in April, start it in March, when people are still talking about the Super Bowl and just starting to agonize over how they'll survive the NFL offseason. Then, move the MLB postseason from October to August, before the start of the aforementioned NFL season. Yes, I know Reggie Jackson will forever be known as Mr. October, but I haven't been able to reach him for comment on this as he's been trying to engineer a trade for his fantasy football team. No, he hasn't been watching baseball either.

2. 162 games? Seriously?

Imagine if the MLB had just been created, and there was a committee to determine the number of games there should be in the regular season. If I was a member of this committee, and someone yelled out something to the likes of "how about 162 games," everyone would laugh it off as some kind of joke. You want people to go to games thinking that every game matters, and while once in a blue moon, as it did this year, the 162nd game happens to be relevant, baseball would be much better served with a shorter season. Think about it this way -- a shorter season equates to less opportunities for fans to lose interest.

Assuming you accept my suggestion from my 1st bullet point and start the regular season in March, shortening the season to 100 games over 4.5 months (instead of 162 games over 6) would provide people with quality sports year round. Then you can also consider adding two more wild card teams to the postseason and extend the postseason a couple of weeks. Six months of regular season games and 1 month of postseason games makes absolutely no sense. Give the people what they want!

3. Join the rest of us in the 21st century.

What makes someone a good businessman is their ability to adapt with the changing culture. On the contrary, however, baseball is like the crazy hippie still rocking to Simon & Garfunkel on his snazzy 8-track. Now, of course I don't expect you to go completely overboard with video challenge opportunities for every close play at first base, but you should start with something as simple as Youtube. Have you heard of this, Bud? Believe it or not, most kids are probably spending as much, if not more, time on Youtube than they are watching television. And for baseball to really survive, you gotta get the next generation excited for the game.

The NFL and the NBA have keyed in on this already. You can search Youtube for specific game highlights, player highlights, big hits, etc. You know what happens when you search for MLB highlights? You get crappy handheld cellphone footage 100 yards from the action with nothing but the video title and description to let you know what's going on. It's ridiculous. Even David Stern is laughing at you.

Well, Commish, that about wraps things up here. I have been and will always be a baseball fan, but believe me, it's been more than a struggle the past decade to get people excited for any aspect of the MLB season. Please get your people together and fix this league because believe it or not, change isn't always a bad thing.


A Houston Sports Fan

PS I just watched "Catching Hell" on ESPN, and I feel awful for Steve Bartman all over again. Can you do something, anything, to try to remedy his situation? Better late than never. Thanks.


Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...