White Sox GM Rick Hahn recognizes there will be some disappointment and finger-pointing if the White Sox don’t come away with Manny Machado or Bryce Harper this offseason, but he’s not ready to say more about the ongoing negotiations than necessary. Hahn did flat-out reject the idea of signing both free agent stars, as two monster contracts would hamper the long-term flexibility to a harmful degree. While Hahn spoke openly about Machado rumors, he is unhappy with the number of leaks, both true and untrue, coming from the Southside, per the Athletic’s James Fegan. As irritating as the leaks are, Hahn assured the crowds at SoxFest that they will continue to confront leaks of all varieties with honesty. Fegan also notes that former top prospect Manny Banuelos has generated more hype than usual for an unestablished 27-year-old. The Sox preempted Banuelos’ minor league free agency by acquiring him via trade from the Dodgers in November. Banuelos has been around the block, spending time with the Braves and Yankees, starting six games for the former in 2015. He put together a solid campaign last season for the Dodgers’ Triple A affiliate, throwing 108 2/3 innings, with a 9-7 record, 3.73 ERA and 10.52 K/9 versus 3.48 BB/9. Now, rumblings from the league office, and more from SoxFest in Chicago…
- Baseball’s offensive landscape has shifted due to record strikeout totals, increased bullpen usage, shorter stints from starting pitchers and more meticulous long-term bullpen management. These trends have been spotlit by the increased media attention paid to service time manipulation, most-famously in the case of Kris Bryant, as well as the Tampa Bay Rays’ recent revelation that has already made its way into common baseball parlance: the opener. In an effort to curb these trends, Major League Baseball is getting set to present the Players’ Association with rule change proposals that may include the institution of a pitch clock, reinstating the 15-day disabled list and increasing the amount of time an optioned player must spend in the minor leagues, back to 15 days from the current minimum of 10 – though nothing official has yet been released, per Ronald Blum of the Associated Press. The league office could force feed these rule changes with a year’s notice, but Commissioner Rob Manfred is unlikely to use such an aggressive tactic. It will be up to the players, then, to decide whether these proposals are good for the game.
- Of note, the league has made strides in quickening the pace of the game, as average 9-inning game times sped up from 3 hours, 5 minutes, 11 seconds in 2017, to 3 hours and 44 seconds last year. Trimming mound visits without a pitching change from 7.41 to 4.01 certainly had a hand in cutting out those 4+ minutes. Quantifying the impact of these changes is difficult, giving baseball circles more than enough fodder for debate, though it seems the “state of the game” conversations will continue throughout the next two years leading up to the expiration of the current CBA in 2021.
- White Sox pitching coach Don Cooper won’t kowtow to the wisdom of the opener anytime soon, per Daryl Van Schouwen of the Chicago Sun Times. The way Cooper sees it, the role of the starter on the White Sox has not changed, and he still expects to get 6+ innings out of his guys. That’s been a tough ask of late as the Southsiders have built their staff from the ground up via development and trades. Next season is a key year for their young arms, as the trio of Carlos Rodon, Reynaldo Lopez and Lucas Giolito look to cement their place in the rotation before the arrival of the next wave of high profile prospects like Dylan Cease, Michael Kopech and Dane Dunning, the latter two of whom are working their way back from injury. Ivan Nova rounds out the top four in Cooper’s rotation, with Dylan Covey in competition with Banuelos for the five slot. There are still plenty of arms on the free agent market, however, and GM Rick Hahn says the team is working on 3-4 potential acquisitions. Given the collective injury troubles plaguing Chicago’s cavalcade of young arms, it would not be surprising in the least to see one or two veteran arms brought into camp on cheap or minor-league deals.
How about limiting Geico commercials to 200 per game….
One thumbs down? Must work for Geico..
Do not forget Progressive either.
You could say limiting Progressive commercials would increase the “flo” of the game.
Especially the Chevy “these are real people not actors” commercials. Does anyone not tune out to them?
I’m sorry. Did you say something?
Go to YouTube and look up the channel Zebra Corner. “Mahk” roasts all those Chevy commercials.
I hit the mute button on ALL commercials.
Goin with allstate just cuze their spokesman is Dennis Haybert, the guy who played Cerrano in major league
Are you in good hands?
Actually a good idea to shave down time between innings and pitching changes… it would hurt their bottom line at first but if the owners want to speed up the game…
Batters hit 2 more foul balls each half inning, and those savings are negated.
Been going on for years now.
Teams want foul balls. It tires out the pitcher. Guys that see 7 or more pitches before striking out get high 5’s upon return to the dugout.
Ever increasing foul balls are the problem. Period.
(It’s also what makes watching games so boring.)
Expand foul territory and it will reduce the number of fouls. Balls that used to be in the stands will be caught for outs.
Take the arm guards off and let pitchers push hitters off the plate. That will decrease the foul balls.
Also push the backstop further back in future baseball stadiums. That way catchers can make plays and we could see more runners take chances on going first to third on wild pitches and/or passed balls.
Not sure you can shave down time between innings and pitching chances, this is commercial time and sponsors pay a lot of money for slots.
Time between innings and pitching changes is 2 minutes 5 seconds. Every time.
I hope they dont bring it back up to 15 day DL. Think having the 10 day DL really helps teams alot
But does it help the players? I think that is what is being looked at..
It helps the teams. I don’t think it hurts the players. A team isn’t forced to bring a player off the DL after 10 days. If they need more time, they can still have it. It does get them back in the line-up quicker if they didn’t need the full 15 days.
teams like the dodgers ruined the 10 day dl. they carry a 7 man rotation and flip there starters for “fatigue reasons” among other things
Bring back the intentional walk and remove the home run trot!
When someone hits a HR, have them go straight back to the dugout instead of running the bases.
Remove the HR trot? The idea is to minimize the boring, fan-unfriendly wastes of time in baseball. The HR Trot is a celebration for the team and its fans.
Tony C wrenched his back once circling the bases, had to get a PR to finish it up and the PR was credited with the HR..
There are pitfalls and at least 1 instance of running the bases being of personal importance.
Whole heartedly believe an intentional walk should require 4 pitches and agree with the poster above that any time shaving be the reduction in commercials. everyone knows while at a game between innings that those guys, even the pitcher for the most part who is supposed to be warming up are biding time and little else. it could be ran through the motions in a little over a minute.. if they wanted to.
Like a magician that has u looking at 1 hand while he hides the ball in the other.. Speed up the game?? nonsense with the pitch clock. It’s a distracting conversation from never ending commercials and then those nearly 5m jobs in the post season…
How many players get hurt during an HR trot? That’s ridiculous.
Keep the current IBB. Increase rosters to 26. Limit pitching staffs to 13 men.
So, if I understand your argument (and apologize if I am not reading it correctly) a player can get hurt running the bases after a homer so they should stop that, but you are OK with a pitcher possibly getting hurt throwing four extra pitches?
Two things make the game drag on now: Pitchers taking forever to be ready to throw, and hitters taking forever to get into the box and be ready to hit. I think if most pitchers started to sped up their time on the mound many would become far more effective than they were while walking around it after every pitch.
Greg Maddux had 2-hour games. He worked fast and threw strikes.
How about immediate lifetime bans for any pitcher who issues more than 25 walks a season, and for any hitter who earns more than 25 a season?
BAN THE WALK!
Thanks for wasting my time.
Great Adams think alike
While you’re at it, mght as well do away with stolen bases and sacrifice bunts, and reduce walks to 3 Balls and K’s to two Strikes.
Stolen bases have been replaced by the biggest detriment to the games..The three true outcomes.
Pardon me please if remember incorrectly, but wasn’t the 3 ball walk and 2 strike k one of charlie O’s hair brained ideas???
Or to save even more time stop allowing pitchers to pitch and put the ball on a tee. No more walks and most at bats should be one swing game will be down to about one to one and a half hours long. Problem solved
I would do backflips if bunts went away altogether.
Imagine if Kirk Gibson didn’t get to round the bases with his World Series game winning HR.
Just one of many, many memorable Home Dun trots. You cannot take that from the game or the player. It’s a chance for the fans to celebrate with the team.
Kendry Morales wishes the could make the rule retroactive…
No, an anti-celebration rule at the plate would do that AND it would speed up the game. Im all for people celebrating their accomplishments, but one has to remember there was a time where not every home run had a 5 minute celebration after it like the team just won the pennant
^End any warning given to pitchers throwing inside after a celebrated homerun and that will quickly solve that issue.
Maybe we wouldn’t get shown the stupid highlight a thousand times a year like it was the biggest homer ever.
Chicks Dig the Longball
What happens on a wall scraper that we’re unsure of if it went out or not. You just want the guy to stop running mid basepath? The average home run trot takes about 17 seconds. The average intentional walk takes a minute and a half.
Intentional walks are like, 5 seconds now. Otherwise, I agree with your sentiment.
he’s referencing the OP wanting to bring back the actual 4 pitch IBB
Missed that. Thanks.
Have you ever been to a game? The frenzy that goes on during a home run trot is one of
Have you ever been to a game? The frenzy that goes on during a home run trot is one of the things that make going to games fun.
You’d rather watch four pass ball tosses and a guy slowly jog to first than a homerun trot?
Average home runs per game 1.8 average home run trot 22 seconds. Literally going to average saving less than a minute. Terrible idea.
September rosters need to be addressed as well. 5 months playing one way and the final month another way makes no sense.
They should let teams have those rosters, but limit it to 25 players per game like the rest of the year.
Such an easy fix, why they never do that I don’t know.
I agree wholeheartedly!
the concept of allowing young players to get some playing time is good, but not when it conflicts with the horrible service time situation and when you use it to have bullpen changes every batter.
rosters should be expanded (not to 40, but say 28) in April, while teams are still stretching out their starters.
i would be fine with 27-28 in april and 30-32 in September, though its probably just as likely that contenders would promote mostly BP arms. perhaps they can test such a system and see how it works.
it makes perfect sense. you get to bring up thor young players and see them play. that’s part of fandom. its not broke no need to fix.
Give each team a set number of 10-day DLs. Once they’ve used them up, they go to 15-day DLs. They can always choose to use a 15-day DL rather than burning a 10-day.
That is a great idea!
Response to a deleted comment. Ignore.
Five minutes makes no difference in fans watching. If you want the fan base to grow, and get younger, lower the ticket prices. Too many empty seats at too many stadiums. Make those empty seats affordable for families, and the kids will get exposed to the game, and create the next generation of fans. Those teams that are selling out, like Boston, currently, don’t need to change. Teams like Cleveland and Tampa Bay and Detroit, which are not selling out, should be required to drop all remaining seat prices by half, the hour before the game starts. Even if they did this with outfield seating only, it would help build the fanbase, and they will make up the price drop on added concession sales.
Tickets in Tampa would go from like $20 to $10 it’s not the ticket prices it’s just that no one cares
Stadium location is a big problem for Tampa. They care.
move Tampa team to Monteal. Nobody would miss it
^And draw less fans in Montreal???? No!
ticket prices will go down if teams think they should. the league does not feel bad for a team that doesnt make as much money when it’s doing bad buissness.
This is so true stymeedone
In the ’80s you could get everyone into the outfield or upperdeck for $5. I remember constantly getting shuttled down to the stadium. The parents would take turns taking the neighborhood kids
Most of us from that block are all still big baseball fans. Hook em early!
Lots of fans watch games without ever attending one. I watched games when I was 10, but didn’t see my first game until I was 17. Millions of fans don’t live near a big league stadium, and attending a game is an event.
In addition to attracting kids to ballparks they need to make games more consumable on TV for younger fans, and shorter games helps that. I like longer games, but I understand the need for them to be shorter.
Part of what made the game watchable as a kid was that it ended before bed time. Due to the dollars from the networks, playoff games dont start til 8pm eastern, and the intros and ceremonies delay things another half hour. If I’m a kid, I’d rather miss a couple innings at the start than miss the end. The owners need to do what’s best for the long term health of the game and stop letting the TV networks dictate what’s best for the TV network.
That’s funny, because growing up, I rarely got to see ends of Braves games unless I pushed the boundaries of going to bed past 9 or 9:30
Scheduling is also a problem. Games in April played in 32 degree weather is ridiculous. Sat and chilled through an Indians-Royals game last April dressed like I was at a Browns game.
At the same time that fans beef about games in cold weather cities in April, it would be unfair to the warm weather teams and dome teams to have an unbalanced schedule of early season home games with the cold weather cities being able to load up on the warm weather home games in the summer.
This is going to cut down on Front Row Amy’s tv time at Miller Park… Fox Sports WI will not like this.
*American Family Insurance Park
Back Door Amy is far less visible since they moved the camera position. I sat in that seat one time before she got it for the season.
My guess is she will adjust her seat location this year to suit the new camera position.
She can’t. Unless the current season ticket holders give up their seat There are nine seats in that row. One season ticket holder has the four closer to the aisle. A different one has the other four. There’s just that single seat in the middle available. That’s why it was often available for single game purchase.
I don’t see the players agreeing to any of the noted rule changes
I feel like they would be in favor of a longer DL. More protection for themselves.
LOL. A player doesn’t HAVE to come off at the end of the 10 days. It’s only a minimum. If anything, the shorter DL protects the players more. A team’s more willing to DL a guy for a minor tweak, strain, etc if it means losing him for 10 days. At 15, they might keep him active, let him sit out a game or two and possibly bring him in too soon, even if to just pinch hit
Agreed. Also, players want to play, because they get paid more if they have more counting stats. The 10-day DL will allow them to get back on the field faster.
For the player that is getting called up for just ten days (and is also in the union) getting sent back down, getting claimed on waivers, having to move, only to get claimed again, it’s playing havoc on their life and family. They aren’t getting paid top dollar, and only getting MLB minimum when up. That one paycheck is not worth the upheaval. They may not even get used during a 10 day call up.
God Bless America would take away a couple minutes. It isn’t necessary. We already honor/swear allegiance to the country during the Star Spangle Banner. Do we really need another song in which God then blesses the country? It isn’t even tradition and only came into play after 9/11.
So you’re saying do away with the 7th inning stretch? Or are you just anti-God?
The 7th inning stretch existed long before God Bless America catwalked onto the scene. I am suggesting that rather than extend the 7th inning stretch a couple of minutes, we remove it. You know, like before 2001. I’m not anti-God. I just don’t think it serves a purpose with 20,000 fans stuffing hot dogs and beer in their belly.
If you want to honor God, honor your God before or after the game. That’s what I do. (brave – Not sure if your comment was a joke or not but I am taking it seriously.)
At the very least it gives more time to sell concessions at last call.
I wasn’t serious. I should have included a Smiley Face.
I’m pro-God and I agree. Get rid of this unnecessary song.
But the 7th inning is the only time I get to hear John Denver’s Thank God I’m a Country Boy!
He’s not your God or my God, HE is plain & simply God! We should always TRY to honor God every day.
The Great Sacred Chicken laughs at your false sky daddy!
I’m anti-religion, so yes, I’d really rather enjoy it if they just did the peanuts and cracker jacks, so I could enjoy my beer. Or sing America the Beautiful. Whatever. It’s baseball I’m there to see.
And get rid of the walk up music for hitters; get in the box, stay in the box, and hit
I don’t mind the walk up music but yes, stay in and hit.
STAY IN THE BOX. That’ll take 15 minutes off every game. Stop adjusting your gloves after every pitch. I could go on and on but a pitch clock is what will really speed up the game.
There also needs to be a pitch clock.
then watch football. the one true thing that makes this game special is no clock. geez. it’s a lazy way to fix a problem
I agree somewhat on the walk up music, but some fans like it. A compromise is they get to use it one time per game? EVERY Cub fan I talk to are super sick of hearing Ben Zobrist’s wife’s take on Benny and the Jets 300 times a year. It actually made me hate that song…
get rid of this, get rid of that, it wont matter. people arent gonna watch baseball because it goes nearer the pace of more popular games bacuse it is not the same type of game as these other games.
Baseball is a gentleman’s sport and a thinking mans game. I understand it’s not for everybody.
Legit did a great episode on this issue, very funny
You aren’t necessary
Hahn already backpedaling… not good. J.R. please, just sell the team already.
Yes, laughable that I see a story about “Sox not likely to sign BOTH Machado and Harper”!
Sox need to either go “all in” on Machado and make him an offer he can’t refuse – but only if he is excited about playing 3B – or else withdraw their current offer.
Am I the only one who dreams of who will be the WSox next owner?? MJ?? Cuban?
“Chance the Rapper” or Obama
If the Sox do not get Machado or Harper I could care less, I’m amazed they tried, and apparently made a good enough pitch to Machado that this is a tough decision for him in the end. This mystery team this and that is all fluff, and if the Padres want to overpay another FA to have average numbers in their godawful pitchers park, let them.
There are good FAs next off season as well (and if Eloy is up doing what he should do, the Sox likely look a lot more attractive to those FAs as well), and I think both Machado and Harper are pricey guys and both come with baggage of sorts. Not broken up if the Sox do not get them, nor am I mad. At least they will not be saddled with an huge contract if things go south. True fans should feel the same way.
Im no fan of JR, but at least he is established. I was mad at him for the shutdown in the 90’s and his doggedness to keep KW in some role, but lets face it, Just look to the north side of town. The Cubs got a gung ho owner who spent lavishly on his club. He got his WS, but now they are whining about their budget restrictions, and now that the rest of their division (who did not spend lavishly but yet still seemed to be competitive) is caught up and the Cubs will have to really fight this year to get to the playoffs..
The next owner of the Sox will likely have to over pay for the team and gut the team to compensate (see the Marlins, and to an extent, the Cubs) ,then complain about lack of ticket sales and gut the team even more. So, ‘Sox fan’, do you really want that?
You don’t get it, do you? The inability of this organization to invest payroll on anybody with elite talent has held this team back for decades. The rebuild has given them enough financial flexibility to change that, and J.R. still won’t commit. And say what you want personally about Machado, he’s an elite bat with GG defensive skill at 3rd base, something the White Sox have a need for. End of story.
Saying ‘End of story’ tells me you know you are on shaky ground with your comment in the first place, but are afraid to admit to it so you say ‘end of story’ hoping that someone will not call out your B.S. For example: How do you know that J.R. wont commit? Why? Because of a RUMOR that the Sox only offered this or that? If J.R. was ‘not committing’ then Machado would have likely signed with another team by now. Has he at this time? No. So HOW exactly do you know this is due to J.R.?
We do know that J.R authorized a rebuild after spending 10+ years trying to ‘build on the fly’ a team to get back to the series (including in investing in guys that on paper were great pickups but failed), depleting a minor league system in the process. How did that work out? The answer: Not Well! However, they were not going to be stupid about it. Look how many contracts backfired on teams trying to ‘invest payroll with elite talent’ (including the Sox). For example: How are the Angels by the way, how many titles did they win with Pujols again?
We know that Hahn had to convince JR, in his advanced age, that tearing down and rebuilding the team was the answer, something that could take at least 4 years, and that other teams have done it and successfully if done right.
Finally, Machado could be a problem waiting to happen. Apparently some fans, like you, have no scruples about this guy (well gee he can hit and play 3rd, lets get him.. ‘end of story’), when many of us real fans do. We do not want to see a guy being a dirty player on our favorite team (by the way, which could result in suspension, and meaning he is not in games contributing). We do not want to see a guy on our favorite team decide that hustling is not worth it (which could cost a game if he lollygags it to first). So yeah ‘ elite talent’, but at a cost. As for Harper, he is a guy who will get overpaid and the team that does it is going to regret it almost immediately. If Machado (or Harper) came here and stunk you sound like you would be the kind of guy that would then rant about how JR screwed up by opening the checkbook for one of them anyway.
So I think you need to go look in the mirror when you cry out ‘You do not get it, do you?’
26-man roster, reinstate the intentional walk, keep the 10-day DL, have hitters remain in the batters box with one foot unless it’s after a foul ball, stop switching balls every time one touches the dirt and lift the mound height back to 1968 rules (10 inches back to 15).
You can’t ask for quicker games AND more scoring. Cannot have it both ways. The more hitters hit and get on-base, the longer the game.
1968 rules? So MORE Ks?
Yep. And longer starts for starting pitchers along with (potentially) less pitching changes but that’s debatable. Hitters will have to adjust.
I couldn’t agree more, especially the comment about switching balls after every time they hit the dirt. It is absolutely ridiculous and is a waste of time (and money too). It’s not uncommon for teams to go through 70+ baseballs per game. Absolutely unnecessary!
While this may not speed up the game too much, it would certainly help improve the perceived diva personas of some of these pitchers. Take whatever ball they give you, get on the mound and throw it over the plate!
The balls are replaced because any scuff could give the pitcher an advantage. Remember Joe Niekro and the emory board? A scuffed ball can be worked the same as a spitball.
I am aware of the reasoning. Change it, let the pitchers use the ball.
Why has the game gotten so slow? Easy. Mlb profits. Too many commercials that are far too long. Removing the length commercials would shorten the game back to what it was but this would never happen
well we all know commercials are the main ammount of “down time” for fans. the league knows it too, but has yet to realise that there is nothing substantial they can do for this reason, unless they cut serious commercial time, and in turn, profits. this is the only way to actually make the game substantially faster, but like all other methods, wont increase league profits.
Less commercials, just charge more for them. Pass the expense on to the corporations that want the ad time.
if they can get away with charging a bit more for them that could work well. just not sure they would be willing to tale that risk.
Commercials are not just there to make money, they also distract from the inning change over process. Umps come in, get water or whatever, Grounds crew sometimes comes out and tends to the field, some players go out and get some throws in to warm up a bit, pitcher goes to the mound and ensures his step points are OK, etc etc. Sorry, I hate commercials too, but sitting there watching mundane changeover chores like that with the talking heads in the booth prattling on about the olds days is not really my cup of tea either. I have noticed that some commercials are getting cut off mid commercial during games now with the first pitch of the inning sailing in to the catcher. So not sure all of the commercial breaks are the issue, unless they want to start limiting bullpen changes.
You’re right, they are also right…. Commercials play over game action a lot these days. That should never happen. 1 or 2 less commercials would be the easiest fix
If tv watchers are declining due to slow games than longer commercial breaks will make short term league money. As time goes on and less fans watch on tv than less sponsors will be willing to pay big bucks to air commercials. Increase attendance and viewing by shortening time between innings. As more people become fans/watch on tv, commercial slot value will increase and profits will go up with shorter breaks. It may take a few years, but it will happen. MLB needs to realize that their trying to increase profits is actually hurting the game and decreasing long term profits. Maybe they don’t care. Get what they can now and who cares what happens in 20 years.
Lets go Manny Banny!
I for one would like to see if Manny has anything. After all it’s a 5th starter spot on a at best 75 win team. I’m just waiting for the kids to come along in September.
Did anyone ask at SoxFest or happen to know if Cease has a specific # of IP limit for 2019? 124 was last year, but if all goes well hope he doesn’t burn too many in AAA prior to getting first taste of MLB.
Chicks Dig the Longball
I hope they don’t put an innings limit on him as there is very little evidence to suggest that big jumps in innings cause injury. High stress innings seem to have a bigger correlation.
I’d imagine cease won’t be a major factor in the MLB until 2020. Cease hasn’t been immune to injuries. He pitched about half of his total minor league innings last year since being drafted in 2014. If Sox are smart they shoot for 2020 when Kopech comes back. I can’t imagine he’s not on a strict 150-160 innings count for 2019.
The games aren’t too long. Americans’ attention spans are too short.
exactly, and i dont see why the league thinks that there is anything they can do to solve this “problem”
Avg NFL game length: 3 hrs 12min
Avg MLB game length (2018): 3 hrs
lets not forget how much of the NFL game time is actual playing time; less than a third of that
The NFL is nothing but scripted entertainment, especially with all the rule changes.
While I agree the NFL sucks. A team plays 16 games a year minus the playoffs. Hard to compare the schedules and game times.
NFL games are so chopped up it’s maddening. It takes forever to watch the 4th quarter.
the last 5 minutes of game time take 30 minutes
Plus replay has added to the length of games.
Not to mention the fact there’s MUCH more actual game play in baseball during that 3 hours than there is in a 3 hour+ NFL game
Yep, we’re an immediate gratification society. Most people under 40 have the attention span of a gnat.
social media really is ruining everything
I’ve noted that you said this on social media.
I’ve always considered this a news site. A lot like a digital sports page.. But I guess everything is up for reinterpretation these days
These games used to last all day. Enough with the constant shortening!
These games are meant as distractions, a chance to get away. Somewhere along the way the games became too expensive. No one cared how long it took when you only spent $20-$40 on the event. Now they have you for over $100 before you get through the gates. No one can afford it. And now when the real world b*tches at you for escaping (wife, cough,) you can’t just claim it was harmless fun.
All this constant tinkering is going to have the opposite of the desired effect. Someone needs to pay attention to the true fans and make sure they don’t take off. That would be worse than not attracting new customers
Next time you’re at a game, watch how many fans (of all ages) are on their phones with social media. BTW, I’m just as guilty. Attention span!
Chicks Dig the Longball
If you want more people to watch baseball just shrink the strike zone and deaden the balls. Pitchers would have to throw more hittable pitches, meaning hitters would swing more often, but since the ball is dead, it wont go as far to counter act the offensive boom in a smaller strike zone. This would lower strikeouts and teams waiting on the home run to create more doubles, triples, make good fielding matter other than just CF, and incentivize better base running making baseball a more rounded game again. Also, it would make 20-30 hrs mean something again and power hitters would start getting paid.
Chicks Dig the Longball
Also, the argument that the game takes too long and that’s why no one watches is dumb. The NFL takes well over 3 hours per game and it is the highest rated sport in America. People don’t watch baseball because they are bored.
Can’t compare the schedules of the two leagues. Sunday is game day for the NFL. Baseball is everyday.
It’s bad enough the umpires don’t call any strikes above the belts.
While you’re at it, may as well push the fences back in every ballpark possible. That will increase triples.
Get rid of home plate umpires and limit pitching changes. Problem solved.
ChiSox that is why I suggested lifting the mound back to 15 inches from 10. If pitchers can dominate more often and get batters out quicker with less pitches needed they can last longer and there will be less pitching changes in the process.
Not enough. Home plate umpires are ruining the game with their situational strike stones. Standardizing the strike stone leads to less pitches and shorter at-bats.
so make the offense worse so we can see more 2-1 games? No. There’s waaayyyy too much being made on the pace of the game.
agreed. they need to be three but the zone should be electronic
^Knicks….why do people equate more offense to more interest? It’s never been true. More scoring does not mean more excitement. A 2-1 game with two aces on the mound is not a borefest. Hitters have more than enough advantages. It’s time to tilt the scales.
Well said, I concur.
You mean like Cricket?
I don’t think they use computers with cameras in cricket.
was referring to a smaller strike zone, no fences, and dead ball….
I know, was being a wee bit sarcastic.
I know from the money side of things, the commercials won’t be shortened. But — removing a 20-second add from each commercial break would shorten a game by nearly 6 minutes.
It’s time to get creative. I mean, when I go to a game, I make darn sure I bring my bleacher buddy. That way I don’t miss a second of the game. There’s nothing like watching balls and strikes, talking to the fans, and catching a foul ball while peeing in an external bladder. If I can get creative, baseball can too.
I realized a tough reality when my step son came into my life. There are people that can be baseball fans, and there are people that can’t. He can’t. Its too slow of a game for him. Its not the time between pitches. Its not the commercial breaks. Its the lack of consistent play in general that can’t change without changing the game. For me, that’s all build up and I love every minute of it. If a game goes on for 4 hours, I consider that a great ballgame that probably deserves an encore the next day.
He’s not a big sports guy in general, but hockey keeps his interest. Its constantly moving. Very few stops. I was able to get him to embrace my love for the game. Baseball is a lost cause. There’s a lot of kids like him unfortunately. Unless we turn this league into that game from when I was in college “The Bigs” and we start slide tackling at the bases and turning infield singles into inside the park home runs, they are never going to get interested.
I’m not saying hockey has done this better. Statistically speaking, baseball is the more popular game by a landslide. But it has given me a better understanding of why baseball can never attract certain fans.
Also keep in mind some fans “like” violence. If there’s no hitting, no tackling, no brute force, they aren’t interested. The rise of UFC shows this trend. Long story short, baseball has to focus on the fans they have and stop worrying about shaving 20 seconds off here and 30 seconds off there. Focus on making the game that is already loved better. If that shortens it, that’s cool. But that shouldn’t be the goal. The goal should be to improve the flow of the game (aka don’t let David Price take 31 seconds between pitches) and to improve the quality of the game (taking replay / strike zones to a regularly digital medium so that umps can make the same calls the fans can). Anything outside of that is a waste of time and won’t get them anywhere.
I’d add that youth sports are a big way to stir up interest. I played baseball as a youth and enjoy baseball as an adult. I do not much care for the other big 3…. Knowing the game intimately is what gets you into it.
Well said, and great points here. Baseball is definitely not one of the easier sports to casually get into
Definitely agree. Youth sports increase interest. Unfortunately, some kids just aren’t going to enjoy standing in the outfield waiting for their few opportunities. Baseball is a tough sell to today’s youth due to their short attention spans. But I don’t think its shortening the game that’s the problem. Maybe increasing fan involvement, getting fans on the field with the players, etc. Jim Bowden talked a lot on MLB Network Radio about what an awful job MLB does of marketing its assets. Some of these guys are a lot of fun and market themselves. David Wright in New York was a great example. Some teams do a great job individually of promoting guys (Jeter, for example). But overall, baseball doesn’t do a great job of promoting its assets and getting them involved. Mike Trout should be LeBron James. Baseball is more popular then basketball from a sheer numbers perspective. So why is LeBron James so much more marketable then Mike Trout? Or Mookie Betts? I can’t quite place my thumb on the missing element, but it feels like something is missing.
Man… Rick Hahn and I are on the same page for once. I was discussing this the other day and I’d love to get a “fair” or “unfair” on this argument. What’s more responsible for the last few years of free agent struggles: The CBA (aka luxury tax changes, competitive balance changes, etc.) or front offices leaking true and false details about the status of negotiations.
This is the hardest argument ever for me because MLBTR is among my most visited sites day to day and really does a fantastic job of picking up every “valid” leak that trickles out that warrants mention. But is this new era of information actually responsible for hurting the free agent market? A friend asked me that the other day and I almost dropped my drink in shock trying to come up with a rebuke. It seems highly coincidental that the rise of the MLB off-season’s popularity coincided with the struggles of players to net those huge free agent deals. That being said, please don’t take any of this to heart and keep up the amazing work MLBTR staff. I just think it is very interesting to think about the potential cause/effect of this new era in information.
the average player makes 4 million. please dont use the word struggle for a kid making millions
perhaps people may watch baseball more if you can find a way to cut down on bad contracts. a lot of players in the league are only on their respective rosters because they are to expensive to release. perhaps changing how teams have to pay released players will allow better players to take their roster spots, and the players may still be paid.
The average viewer/attendee neither knows nor cares about contracts. I think you’re barking up the wrong tree.
It’s lowering the quality of the overall product. The average viewer may not know about contracts, but they can see guys that don’t belong on the field. The NFL has the best players on the field. The MLB is forced to have lesser quality performers on the field because of long term guaranteed contracts. The front offices are saving the game with the shorter term contracts. People don’t care how long the game is. They want to see elite players performing at peak levels. When players can no longer perform, they will be, and should be, washed out of the league.
That’s just not true, sorry.
Oh, it’s true and it’s coming. When the mlbpa stupidly “demands” that the team control years are reduced in the next cba, they will accelerate it. The market will be flooded with talented players in their prime, meaning only the super super elite will be signed past 32 or 33. Look at the nfl, baseball’s GMs are.
Ok, I see what you’re getting at. We are seeing many, many more player falling off the cliff at 33 similar to what we saw 30 years ago with the Jim Rices and Dale Murphys.
Former future hall of famer, Manny Banuelos, if you please Andy Dufresne.
that’s true, he was a Braves prospect before.
Can anyone tell me??? Has Ray Liotta quit smoking????? Please advise…………………………..Tks.
Maybe, but he could be a lost cause anyway. He seems like a punch drunk boxer.
Want to cutdown on game time?
Make pitchers pitch, and not walk around the mound, or practice their scow-ly face to the batter, or cycle through three hundred signs before deciding on one.
Make hitters stay in the box the whole at bat. They cannot adjust their gloves while in the batters box either. If they do, the pitcher is welcome to quick pitch em.
Finally, stop home plate celebrations during a game. The whole team does not need to come out when a guy breaks a tie with a homer. If it is a walk off, go ahead, the game is over anyway. (but they should eliminate this stupid act anyway due to possible injuries to players.
People can quibble all they want about these things, but lets face it, Much of this stuff did not happen when games were quicker.
if you had a product like mlb would you really want to drain it of excitement?
Runners crashing the catcher at home plate was exciting. Nobody’s pushing for it’s return. Some of us can live without excessive homerun celebrations in the 2nd inning.
it’s easy just fine the crap out of them till they get it. mlb acts like they dare not enforce the rules
People who are turned off by the traditional intentional walk probably aren’t going to become baseball fans anyway. To change that for the purpose of speeding up the game is silly… And while it was uncommon, some pitchers made intentional walks entertaining due to a lack of control on those tosses.
Why waste four pitches on an intentional walk when you can just concede the base to the batter? That was low hanging fruit, and it’s pointless to look back.
I wish they would just give it up on trying to speed up the game. Is that really going to increase viewership? It’s these darn millennials needing things faster to make it more interesting. Now they’re taking starting pitchers out after 85 pitches? They used to throw 140-150 pitches back when baseball meant more than ad money and tv revenue. We’re conforming to a weaker and weaker generation. Both emotionally and physically.
Three outcomes has reduced the game to HR highlights and strikeouts. All the exciting plays are rare, doubles, triples, stolen bases, plays at the plate, squeeze bunts, hit n run. Watching the Royals a few years ago was fun baseball.
Trimming 4 minutes off a game isn’t the answer. Ichiro, Altuve, Jose Reyes, that’s what makes fun baseball.
Yes, Yes, Yes and Yes…give that man a case of cigars……It’s not the length of games AT ALL it’s the boredom of watching Home Run Derby, which becomes Strike Out Derby.
“Billy-ball” may have been right or wrong in a metric sense, but it was sure as heck fun to watch……
If you want to encourage families to bring their kids, figure out a way to give kid discounts on tickets, like kid’s meals at restaurants. Maybe 10-20% off a ticket for kids under 12. I don’t know how you’d do that, though.
if you really want the game to be affordable the only answer is a salary cap. that’s the only thing that will make more teams competitive and keep prices from going up.
With starters in many cases not even going 6 innings, teams employing “openers”, bullpen “specialists” , and using multiple pitchers in a single inning, the 25 man roster is hopelessly out of date.. It should be increased to 28 or even 30 to enable the adequate utilization of position players as pinch hitters and defensive replacements. As much wear and tear the catchers are subject to, carrying an additional defense capable catcher would probably boost the overall numbers from starting catchers by affording them more rest .
The 40 man roster is also past it’s prime.. It needs to be raised to 45, if not for all, then for smaller market/payroll teams to enable them to protect more of the players they develop since their focus is not on buying players for their roster.
Your latter suggestion of increasing the 40 man roster is a bit trickier as that would force a raise in the luxury tax threshold to accommodate 5 new players. Players not on the 40 man roster don’t count against the luxury tax if I’m not mistaken.
However, your initial idea is dead on. Time to increase the roster sizes to better suit this new era in baseball. We aren’t going back to starters throwing 10-12 complete games anymore. Its never going to happen. So opening up the active rosters a bit seems very logical to me.
Adding to the 25 man roster, means adding time onto the game. Teams will add more pitchers, which means more pitching changes. It also removes strategy if you have a pitcher in the bullpen for every situation, instead of having to decide which righty is going to have to pitch to the dangerous lefty, because of limited arms in the pen.
Limit the pitching staff to 13 players.
Most of the players added to both the active roster and the 40+ roster would probably be of the prospect/defense/aging vet variety, and they wouldn’t make much money.
No real surprise white sox aren’t signing Harper or nachado. Resnsdorf has always been a cheap owner. They went and got Griffey, only when he was at retirement age. They haven’t had a decent signing since Albert belle, even he was tainted on his corked bats..
Just make everyone fat again. Baseball was better when everyone was fat. Who didn’t like Bartolo Colon pitching to Mo Vaughn???
a clock is a lazy pathetic way to get results and does not address the real problem of pitching changes. mlb and the players need to realize who brings them $ and start thinking about us. if they strike again baseball is done.
If you need a shorter version of baseball…. How about an off-season Over The Line league? Or bring back the Shell Home-run Derby -or- televise some of the off-season leagues that already play
Anything else but messing with this game.. All the strategy stuff is gold! Let em play checkers if they don’t like multiple levels of play
Giolitto really has some atrocious number. Still only 24, so maybe he puts it together.
Speed up the game – pitchers warm up in the bullpen. They don’t need 8 more pitches on the game mound, while everyone waits. If each team makes 2 pitching changes during an inning, that’s 32 pitches no one needs to see. That would shave several minutes off the game without changing any aspects of actual play.
I’d have 3 pitches instead of 8, only because I think the pitcher should get a feel for the mound. The other problem is you have commercials running during that time and MLB will probably want to stretch it out, therefore cutting the warmup pitches may not speed the game up afterall.
Pitchers don’t actually get their 8 pitches any longer. There is a clock that starts as soon as the reliever crosses the warning track. He has 2 minutes 5 seconds (for a local broadcast; 2:25 for national broadcast, 2:55 for playoff games) to get to the mound and warm up. The final warm up throw has to be thrown with 20 seconds left, regardless of how many he has thrown.
Still a Reds fan
This is nothing new. its just now migrating to baseball. Big business has trended for years away from sharing wealth with its employees. Everywhere you look big companies are cutting payroll and benefits. the rich get richer and the poor poorer. the 8 richest people in the world have more wealth than the bottom HALF of the earths population (3.75 billion) Sure they have to make more money when they are making 100 mm a year they want 200 mm and it will be taken from their employees. In the end we will all work for minimum wage.
How this concept escapes us in beyond belief
Baseball isn’t even a real business….yet somehow the masses would prefer they act more like a corporation? That isn’t good for anybody but a handful of people
It’s a $10B industry and they don’t have to play by normal rules. Normal rules that are already skewed to the side of the wealthiest…….are thrown aside for MLB for an even more lopsided set of rules. But somehow we give them a pass