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?
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.