I'm done with the MLB

and their Mickey Mouse shit.

DH in the National League? Why is that a Covid issue?

A runner on second base in extra innings? Let’s just have a steal home contest. A tie after more innings when the players get too tired? Bullshit. Harvey Haddix pitched 12 2/3 perfect innings. Get off your millionaire asses and play while your middle class fans pay high dollar for tickets and drink $11 beers.

I’m done. Been a fan my whole life, but fuck 'em. I’m following a minor league team to watch guys who care to play.

It seems foolishly risky to me to play baseball during a pandemic.

My baseball fandom has waned in the last few years. I blame cancelling cable and having the Red Sox win everything every four years as opposed to what we Red Sox fans really need - crushing defeats in the face of victory. I got spoiled. However …

DH in the National League is evil. I mean I can live with it because the junior league has already spit in the eye of the Baseball Gods and adopted it, so I suppose I’ll grudgingly accept it with a deep scowl on my face … but a man on second automatically in extra innings? Is that real? That’s like little league type adjustments.

When I played in high school, I wasn’t particularly good but I was an athletic kid so I could pull it off. I never made starter but we did have this goofy friggin’ rule - and I’d be curious to know how common this was - designated runner. What would happen is our 250 pound behemoth would crack a rope to the gap and waddle down to first where I would take over and steal second, but he would maintain his place in the lineup; I’d only get in the game if he got on base. Even while I was doing it, and grateful for getting a little playing time, I thought it was ridiculous. Now I fear I’ve given the MLB another goofy idea to run with.

Those changes are only for this shortened season. Im glad baseball is back. Sport brings regularity back to life. Soccer has returned to Europe with no ill effects.

Meh, they’ve been talking about yanking the DH for years. Maybe they could have years in which both leagues decide to use a DH and both leagues to go without. That would certainly make free agency a lot more interesting.

DH is for this season as there is increase interleague play (by percentage of games at least). Baseball with be regionalized this short season.

Teams will play their four divisional opponents 10 times and each of the five interleague opponents in the same geographical area four games apiece.

60 games at 4x10 (Div) + 5x4 games (Local other league Div).

They’ve already had to close the training camps because of a bunch of Covid-infected players. Seems like the height of foolhardiness to plan on playing even a mini-season.

At least they’ve got the ratio of regular season to postseason about right: 60 games to eliminate 20 teams, then 20 games to eliminate 9. I’ve been saying for years that 162 games is more than enough that you shouldn’t need any wild card teams. But they make sense in a much shorter season.

I don’t give a crap what they do to tinker with the game this year. Make the pitcher wear a funny hat, the bases are run clockwise in innings divisible by 3, whatever. I’m actually afraid they didn’t institute enough changes. The game is in a decline, and something is going to have to give at some point - this is the time to see what can work (hint: it’s having the umps enforce pace-of-play and keeping batters in the box).

I think the owners that were all in favor of getting the season going should be publicly shaming the 7 or 8 owners that held up the negotiations. It’s absolutely absurd that it took this long to come to the same agreement they came to back in March. Those owners need to be held accountable. Manfred’s an empty shell of a figure head - he should be fired as well.

I think this season could be really fun. It’s so short that small sample variance is going to play a massive role in the outcome of the regular season. Can someone put together a 20/20 season in just 60 games (Eric Davis did in 1987 - what a fun start to a season that was)? Can someone hit .400?

I agree that they can and should do anything they want to the 1/3 of the season or whatever it ends up being that they play. It is different, make it feel different just makes sense to me.
The part that’s irked me is how poorly this has been handled by MLB and players.

I suspect that all of the team sports are going to run into some serious issues with COVID-19 as they try to restart. The leagues had hoped that, by this point, we’d be on the backside of the “first wave,” but with cases and hospitalizations accelerating in many states, that’s clearly not the case.

I’d love to have baseball back, but I agree, it’s sounding like a worse idea every day.

I must say I don’t get the connection between the rule changes and the shortened season. I think they’re sticking their toe in the water and see if they can implement these changes permanently. I’m conflicted about the DH, and see arguments both ways. Starting an inning with a runner on second base is a change I will never accept. I don’t mind extra inning games, and I don’t see a need for this foolishness.

The runner on second was, IIRC, one of the ideas that the owners floated a couple of years ago in an effort to address reducing the bloated length of MLB games. At that time, it got quickly shot down.

I still maintain that a pitch clock, and limiting batters’ ability to step out of the box after every pitch, would be the simplest and most effective ways to actually reduce dead time in the game, but it’s sounded like the MLBPA has shot down those ideas in the past.

God I hate the DH. It makes baseball less fun. Unfortunately it’s coming for for NL. I think they are sticking it here in the midst of the other changes and hoping people don’t notice and then next season go with “Well, you liked it last season so it’s staying” since no one is going to do anything this season.

Overall, I’m glad to get to watch some baseball but I think it’s a terrible idea for the players and their families and I doubt we’ll even get the 60 games in before it gets shut down due to several teams catching COVID.

MLB: We need to speed up games, but we just don’t know how.
Fans: Keep the batter in the box.
MLB: I know, no more intentional walks, those are killing us.
Fans: That will save 30 second per game. Just keep the batter in the box.
MLB: Get rid of the DH!
Fans: No, uh…wait, what? What does that have to do with game length?
MLB: Runner starts on second! Fielders have to wear their gloves on the wrong hand after the 6th!
Fans: Just keep the damn batter in the damn box!

I hope they keep the 60-game season from now on, Covid or no Covid. It dramatically increases the importance and value of each game.

A 162-game season waters down each individual game’s importance down to almost nothing.

No. Dropping to 60 games permanently would be worse than universal DH. One of the best things about baseball is there is always a game on all summer long. I could get behind dropping to 150 games or something if there was some reason for it but 5 months of baseball everyday is wonderful.

All of what Munch said. Keep the damned batter in the box. Oh, and put the pitcher on a clock.

Given the drastically different severity and fatality rates for COVID in the elderly vs a young, healthy cohort like MLB players, this would have been the year to try out roboumps. Given umpires skew older and… ‘less athletic’ than the players. And keeping managers isolated too.

Ridiculous it took this long for players and owners to agree to this.

Technically, they agreed to this back in March. The owners have just been fucking around trying to get a better deal.

Though to be fair, that actually does have a little something to do with game length - as it would result in slightly less pitcher changes for pinch hitters.

Maybe not. It makes sense in theory, but NL vs AL stats show the opposite.

Midinning changes added about 3 minutes and 15 seconds per game in 2018. But the NL had fewer midinning pitching changes last season (2,213) than the AL did (2,452).

And another (tiny) factor - pitching to other pitchers is faster, probably because there’s less debate on which pitch to throw, and because pitchers are less likely to STEP OUT OF THE DAMN BOX EVERY PITCH.

Pitchers in the NL took 23.9 seconds between pitches, while the AL pitchers took 24.3 seconds. But when pitchers batted, the game sped up. The time between pitches was 20.1 seconds last season when NL pitchers hit but 24.2 seconds when all other NL hitters were at bat.