Over the past several years, I’ve gone from being a very serious baseball fan to being a casual one at best. There’s a simple reason why: I miss pennant races. That’s pennant races between great teams, where the winner goes on and the loser goes home. The last one of those was in 1993. (Braves 104-58, Giants 103-59. That one was like a frickin’ drug. But I digress.)
The wild card has screwed all that up, of course. MLB wanted a little more money from the postseason, and now (unlike, say, 1978) it doesn’t matter that the Red Sox finished behind the Yankees. Well, it’s their game, and all that.
So regardless of the reality that I consider the Division Series to be a poor substitute for a meaningful regular season, I start getting drawn in by the baseball chatter here and on the sports websites. Besides, both the Braves and the Red Sox, not to mention the Cubs and the Moneyball A’s, are in the playoffs. Maybe I should watch some of the games in this first round.
And I can. Sort of.
Specifically, I can watch two games, total. I can watch the Braves-Cubs game tonight, which is good.
Tomorrow, I can’t see a thing. Nothing. Nada.
It doesn’t matter that Pedro Martinez is pitching for the Sox; that Barry Bonds, Sammy Sosa, Javy Lopez, and other baseball greats will be playing in the other contests. Baseball is broadcasting none of them. No Sox-A’s, no Giants-Marlins, no second game of Cubs-Braves. Not a one.
Thursday night, I can watch the Twins play the Yankees. Big whoop.
As of this writing, that’s it. Out of somewhere between twelve and twenty first-round games, they’ll only commit to having two on free TV.
Look, MLB, it’s really this simple. I’m a sports fan, but otherwise, I’m not a TV watcher. I shouldn’t have to pay $300 per year for cable TV I’ll almost never watch, just so I can see the MLB postseason. That’s a bit steep, quite frankly.
I’ve been paying less and less attention to you these past few years, and I guess it’ll keep going that way. You’ve gutted the regular season in favor of these Division Series games, and now I don’t get to see them either.
I get the message. Thanks.