The MLB season, the Never Ending Story

Mark Baker is the latest addition to our writing roster. His full story on how he became a baseball fan will be published on Saturday, but first, here’s his take on the proposed expansion of the playoffs.

The Major League Baseball season is like the season of no other sport I know. It’s not just long, it’s a long distance run in a world of 100 metre dashes. If the NFL is a sprint, the NHL a relay, the NBA a hurdles race, then MLB (with 162 games per team in the regular season alone) is without a shadow of a doubt a cross-country marathon.

Recent speculation emanating from the darkest warped recesses of Commissioner Selig’s mind, suggest that the post-season might even be extended to a 10 team playoff. That’s one third of all Major League teams. That’s an extra wildcard team in each league. An extra goodness-only-knows how many games. Extra $$$$ for Selig and the MLB. Extra potentially injury-inducing playing time for the players.

But, the most important question is, is it extra for the fans? Would you be happy to see your team reach the World Series because they were in the top ten at the end of the regular season? What if they were number ten of thirty and went on to win the whole shebang? What if they were number one of thirty and were eventually beaten by the tenth seed?Marathon

Or, to return to the running metaphor, is it necessary to add an extra mile to the London marathon? I for one would venture a negatory. Any [insert favoured web browser here] search would reveal that the vast majority of fans would also be against such a decision. As we have come to realise, this would by no stretch of the imagination mean that they would pay the slightest bit of attention to what the fans want.

I’m not as opposed to Selig as others I’ve come across, heck – he used to be the owner of my favourite team and is a native of their home city, but this latest proposal does seem like one step too far.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I love baseball. I’ll do as much as I can to see it in almost any form, so adding games at first seems like a good idea. But what’s next – a year-round non-stop season? There can be too much of a good thing.

4 Responses to The MLB season, the Never Ending Story

  1. Matt Smith June 10, 2011 at 8:13 am #

    Welcome to the site, Mark.

    MLB certainly is a marathon and if anything it could do with being shortened rather than extended. It looks like the playoffs will only expanded through a single-game Wild Card match-up in each league, so hopefully that won’t make too much difference schedule wise.

    Still, when you see the amount of injuries that there are at the moment, especially to pitchers, you have to wonder whether reducing the regular season back down to 154 games would make sense. The odds that MLB owners will countenance losing the revenue of 8 games each is slim to none.

  2. Nate December 18, 2011 at 9:03 pm #

    I find it kinda weird how MLB does one thing that is great for baseball by moving the Astros to the AL (although it would have made sense to choose a different team if they really wanted a team to move to the AL West, but that isn’t really the point) and then, at the same time, decide to do something that’s bad (expanding the playoff rosters). W-L records will be a better representation of how good teams really are with the new, more balanced, schedules that are going to be the result of the two divisions having an equal amount of teams. However, the thought of the tenth best team winning the World Series sickens me.

    • Mark Baker December 19, 2011 at 9:40 am #

      Which team do you think MLB should have moved to the AL instead of the Astros?

      • Nate December 21, 2011 at 1:05 pm #

        My first choice would probably be the Padres, but the Rockies and Diamondbacks would also make sense. Not only are those teams in the western U.S. (unlike the Astros), but they also don’t have an AL rival, so to say. It’s not a huge deal, and I can see why MLB would want five teams in each division, but the Astros wouldn’t have been my first choice.

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