Part Two: Rob Manfred & the questions that remain
“My dream is for this sport to really have an international flavor,” Bud Selig said Saturday during his half-hour interview with the Associated Press. “Does it need teams in other countries? … If one uses a lot of vision it could.”
Here’s my problem with him potentially leaving Rob Manfred with this idea or this incredible task. How could it work? We can’t have teams and players that have play 162 games a season going overseas to play teams in other countries.
Having the season open in Japan, Australia and other forgien countries is tough enough on the players and so the only way I forsee this as even a possibility is having leagues in different countries whose winners would then play the winners of other leagues and with all that expansion how would that affect the continued lengthening of the playoffs?
I would love to see baseball played year-round and these days it practically is. Yet continuing to add to the playoff layout will keep the players of the World Series without any time to rest at least by my basic mental calculations.
That’s not alright. These are professional athletes and there would be a rash of injuries simply from overuse that I do not want to see. Would the number of players per team be expanded too?
And really, isn’t that kind of expansion that the World Baseball Classic was put into place for? For other countries to compete for the title of the World’s best? And I should point out that it is something that the United States of America has never been able to win (or even finish higher than fourth place).
It’s almost like the pitch clocks being implemented in Double and Triple-A in 2015. Putting a clock into a timeless game?
If all these changes eventually take place (and I do understand that any of them would take a number of years to be put into place) those of us who relish the rich history and tradition of the game, will not recognize it anymore. The fundamentals that have made baseball “America’s Pastime” what it is will be long forgotten in future generations.
Is that really what we want? To lose what is a major part of American history? A game that outlived two World Wars only to be more prosperous and popular today than it’s ever been?
Still, as I said in part one of this random talk I am having with whoever reads this, overall Selig did a good job: labor peace, expansion (but when does it stop?), prosperity? Selig introduced revenue sharing and a luxury tax that has slowed spending by large-market teams, has allowed every club except Toronto has made playoffs this century.
Also, as Manfred has now taken control over the game he’s written a letter to the fans which, I found this morning after writing what you have read above. You can read by following this link:
Commissioner Robert Manfred’s Letter to MLB Fans
In his letter he does talk about modernizing the game which I am obviously somewhat against – speeding up a literally timeless game by 10-15 min will not help the causal fan want to be there more often and similar to too much expansion it takes away from the essence of the game.
However, Manfred does mention that he wants to stick to tradition while modernizing. He mentions working with youth baseball which is a great things … and more which I will leave you to read.
All I can say is, let’s wait and see. He could end up being different from Selig although I doubt it, the same as Selig or go totally off the grid.The fact remains that baseball has both a new commissioner and a new baseball to play with …. it’s about that time of year so let’s play ball!! (Go A’s!! LOL!)
Vine courtesy of Cut4 and MLB.com