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MLB 2021 Season Thread


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33 minutes ago, Ferdinand Cesarano said:

 

If you consider introducing further scheduling imbalances, distorting the record books, diminishing the value of the World Series, and generally spitting in the eye of history to be awesome, then you are perfectly entitled to enjoy interleague play.

 

For me, that change had the effect of converting me from an ardent follower of everyday results to a purely historical fan; and it is from this historical standpoint that I am interested in considering all subsequent rule changes. (Though of course I do keep up with the uniforms.)

 

"Spitting in the eye of history." Please. We're talking about a history that didn't allow black players until 1947. Hell, the Red Sox didn't sign Pumpsie Green until 1959. How many potential black HOFers never even got a shot at playing Major League Baseball? There were no playoffs before 1969. Before 1972, all pitchers had to bat. The Wildcard was added in 1994. The mound has been lowered, the spitter was banned, the dead ball was changed, relief pitching, free agency, expansion, advanced analytics, I could go on and on. Do you really believe that without interleague play, the game we're watching today is the same game from whatever point in history it is that you're currently stuck in? C'mon. The game has been changing since the Cincinnati Reds first took the field in 18-whatever.

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1 hour ago, Ferdinand Cesarano said:

 

By contrast, a rule change that I abhor is the automatic intentional walk. In the first World Series that I ever saw, in 1972, Rollie Fingers struck out Johnny Bench on a fake intentional walk.  Since then there have been instances during intentional walks in which hitters have swung for base hits, and in which pitchers have thrown wild pitches or have picked runners off. That such events do not happen often is irrelevant; the threat of any one of these things had been present in every intentional walk, creating tension.

 

I agree on the automatic intentional walk. No matter how much one loves baseball, 162 games is a lot of games. To me, the intentional walk was always an opportunity for something truly bizarre and memorable to happen. Did it happen a lot? No. In fact, I don't recall seeing it happen. But the possibility lingered. Now, I would totally give that up if the change would provide a meaningful amount of time savings. But given how often intentional walks happen, I tend to doubt the average game is even a minute shorter because of the rule.

 

However, that same reason is part of why I am anti-DH. Bartolo Colon's home run. I still remember like 15 years ago the Twins were playing the Marlins the the cavernous football stadium and Johan Santana hit a triple. It was awesome. I don't even remember who won the game. Sure, the DH may have even hit a homer in his place, but we see that all the time. 

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39 minutes ago, infrared41 said:

 

Interleague play is awesome. I didn't bother reading the rest of your manifesto. Sorry.

 

I love interleague play and see it as correcting baseball's biggest wrong. Think about the hundreds of baseball greats who played during the exact same era as other baseball greats, but never against each other because they happened to be in opposite leagues. What a dumb system. Were it not for nostalgia and eschewing common sense in the name of tradition nobody would ever defend something so silly.  

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2 hours ago, DEAD! said:

 

I think the NHL should consider a 3-2-1-0 point system like the IIHF tournaments. I would even go as far as skipping the OT and go straight to the shootout. 

 

  Reveal hidden contents

Darth Vader is Luke's father.

 

 

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Just now, Sport said:

 

I love interleague play and see it as correcting baseball's biggest wrong. Think about the hundreds of baseball greats who played during the exact same era as other baseball greats, but never against each other because they happened to be in opposite leagues. What a dumb system. Were it not for nostalgia and eschewing common sense in the name of tradition nobody would ever defend something so silly.  

 

Exactly. And I'll add this. When I was a kid, hell until the Braves popped up on TBS in the 80's when I was in my early 20's, the NL may as well have been playing on Mars. We got the occasional glimpse of NL players in the ASG or on NBC's Game of the Week, but other than that, players like Hank Aaron, Willie Stargell, Roberto Clemente, Johnny Bench, etc., were just pictures on baseball cards or in SI and Baseball Digest. I'm probably more on the "traditionalist" side with baseball, but no one was more excited about interleague play than I was. You're right, it was finally correcting a "wrong" I'd grown up with.

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1 hour ago, FiddySicks said:

So, the Giants blew a 5-0 lead in the 7th and lost on a walkoff bases loaded walk on Opening Day. 

 

There is absolutely zero reason to waste any time watching them this year. I fully expect them to be even worse than the Rockies. 

 

I'll take it. I was concerned when it was 5-0, but it is nice to see the M's steal one at the end.

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i was think this the other day:

i think the MLB should have the Nationals play the Blue Jays each year (either in DC or Toronto) and have the Yankees play the Giants and the Dodgers either in California or in New York each year.  

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I like interleague, too but I wish the interleague schedule was more like the NFL's intraconference schedule. Bascially, play one division from the other league either at home or on the road. It would make the crosstown rivalries more special. Of course, interleague primarily exists so those rivalries can happen all the time, as they sell a lot of tickets.

I remember when it first started and people would say "nobody cares about a Royals/Pirates matchup." Maybe so, but nobody cared about Royals/Twins either.  The last thing I need when trying to figure out what game I'm going to is more Tigers games.  Getting the Padres or Nationals in on occasion is a nice change of pace.

 

That said, I know it's "just sports" but I do like the idea of the maintaining some scheduling integrity and doing the NFL-like division arrangement would be good for that.

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1 minute ago, OnWis97 said:

I like interleague, too but I wish the interleague schedule was more like the NFL's intraconference schedule. Bascially, play one division from the other league either at home or on the road. It would make the crosstown rivalries more special. Of course, interleague primarily exists so those rivalries can happen all the time, as they sell a lot of tickets.

I remember when it first started and people would say "nobody cares about a Royals/Pirates matchup." Maybe so, but nobody cared about Royals/Twins either.  The last thing I need when trying to figure out what game I'm going to is more Tigers games.  Getting the Padres or Nationals in on occasion is a nice change of pace.

 

That said, I know it's "just sports" but I do like the idea of the maintaining some scheduling integrity and doing the NFL-like division arrangement would be good for that.

 

For me, it was the Rangers. I have no idea how many Indians and Tigers games I've been to in my life, but I'm pretty sure they played the Rangers in about half of them. Anyway, before interleague play started, I had seen exactly three NL teams - Pirates vs. Reds at Riverfront and the Padres in the '84 World Series at Tiger Stadium. Since then, I think I just need the Giants, D-Backs, Braves, and Cardinals to complete the Bingo card. Oh, and the Brewers. They've been in both leagues yet I've somehow never seen them play.

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1 hour ago, infrared41 said:

 

Finally, an event that kills its viewers just might make soccer interesting enough to watch.

Fortunately that hasn't happened in England for a while. Then again you had hooligans from Russia attacking fans at the Euros in France, sometimes even in the stadium. 

23 minutes ago, Sport said:

 

I love interleague play and see it as correcting baseball's biggest wrong. Think about the hundreds of baseball greats who played during the exact same era as other baseball greats, but never against each other because they happened to be in opposite leagues. What a dumb system. Were it not for nostalgia and eschewing common sense in the name of tradition nobody would ever defend something so silly.  

I remember people saying it'd ruin baseball, but then the numbers jumped up and people forgot why they were angry about it. As long as the base runner is done after this year, I'm fine to deal with it for one more year. Not happy about it, but I understand why they're still doing it. 

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15 minutes ago, infrared41 said:

 

For me, it was the Rangers. I have no idea how many Indians and Tigers games I've been to in my life, but I'm pretty sure they played the Rangers in about half of them. Anyway, before interleague play started, I had seen exactly three NL teams - Pirates vs. Reds at Riverfront and the Padres in the '84 World Series at Tiger Stadium. Since then, I think I just need the Giants, D-Backs, Braves, and Cardinals to complete the Bingo card. Oh, and the Brewers. They've been in both leagues yet I've somehow never seen them play.

It's crazy when I am looking at what game(s) to attend and those four teams just dominate the schedule. I'd be all for unbalancing the intraleague schedule. Also, Cleveland vs. Texas in the 1980s at Municipal Stadium. That must have been one tough ticket to get...

 

A few years ago, I went back through my ballgame attendance history and determined the only team I was missing was the Dodgers. They came to Target field on like a Tuesday/Wednesday in April. It was cold, windy, drizzly and miserable.  But I needed to get that final notch on my belt. Nobody would go with me. So I went by myself. As an adult, I've traveled to a lot of ballparks (and have since been to Dodger Stadium), but as a kid in the 1980s, I never saw anyone. Sure, it wasn't Aaron and Mays, but I never saw Tony Gwynn,* Ozzie Smith, Eric Davis, etc.

 

*I was actually able to see the Padres Twice at County Stadium (First interleague and second after the Brewers made the switch) but Gywnn didn't play either game. Boo. I'd love to have seen Tony in his prime, wearing the awesome pinstriped road jersey (with the superior-to-yellow orange trim) in the dumpy Metrodome.

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And now something completely different. Cleveland will be using a pinch drummer for the start of the season:

https://www.espn.com/mlb/story/_/id/31183308/black-keys-drummer-fill-recovering-cleveland-indians-ballpark-fixture-john-adams

 

With longtime drummer and ballpark fixture John Adams recovering from heart surgery and unable to attend his first opener in Cleveland in 48 years, Black Keys drummer and lifelong Indians fan Patrick Carney will fill in and pound away from the left-field bleachers at Progressive Field during Monday's game against Detroit.

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Blanket opposition to interleague play is absurd, and means that you actually hate the sport you claim to love.  Why on earth would you want a system where half the cities in the league never get a chance to see Mike Trout or any of the other superstars?  Mike Trout may be one of the best players of all time, but he may as well just be a made-up fairy tale since I rarely get the chance to actually see him live (I think he's played in Phila like once maybe?)  

 

People say they love the sport, but want to hide half it's superstars and support boring-ass rules that turn people off to the game.  I used to be the most anti-DH person in the world, but you know what?  I'm sick and tired of an inning ending because of a pitcher making the third out with the bases loaded, and while the one time in a hundred that he gets a hit is very exciting, I just can't sit through the 99 anymore.

 

If you love "the game" so much, go watch an amateur game.  Seriously - any sport.  "Professional" sports started, and only exists to provide entertainment.  It does not have any obligation to the actual sport itself.  Go watch a high school game.

 

1. I say "you" as a general "you", not directed to any individual.

2. I agree with the points about the room for improvement in how interleague scheduling is done.  I'm not sure I know of any perfect system, but the current one isn't great.

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1 hour ago, OnWis97 said:

In person?

 

I don't know how many balls go into the stands, but I'd wager that your actual chance of being killed by the spikey ball is less than your chance of getting hit by a car, dying from illness, or dying of boredom from watching the game itself.

 

Now that I think about it, I think that if at least one fan isn't killed by the spike ball, then there should be extra time added until one is.  Soccer has silly timekeeping system anyway, so this should be very easy to implement.

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