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Article: Musical Chairs

  1. Musical Chairs

    1 Comments by prr Published on 30 Sep 2009 04:00 AM
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    Musical Chairs


    In keeping with the utter lack of practicality in these proposals, I'd like to do away with the playoffs entirely.
    Used to be, when I was a lad, in addition to walking to school uphill all three ways, I used to watch all 8 teams (and later all 10) in each league compete for one playoff spot--each league's winner would then meet in the World Series. Typically, that system resulted in boring the fans of at least half-a-dozen teams in each league by August 1st. Any team more than 10 games behind with less than sixty games to go could forget about the pennant, so two-thirds of all fans would have no real reason to follow their teams beyond late July, other than blind loyalty, complacence, and cluelessness. (As a clueless lad, I rooted for the early Mets right up to the final out of their mathematical elimination--and doublechecked the math to make sure they were really out of the race, which, of course, they were never really in to begin with.) So, after enough expansion had taken place to fill the Hindenberg, and after the10-team leagues were carved up into 5-team divisions, and then after the Wild Card was created, the possibility of post-season play was given to maybe half the teams in the league for August and parts of September, extending the point of hopelessness for most fans by six or seven weeks, which has been exciting.
    So why do I propose doing away with the wildly successful and exciting playoffs and the Wild Card? Do I hate baseball that much?

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    Elen sŪla lumenn' omentielvo What Exit?'s avatar
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    To start, yes indeed, I do think this is a terrible idea. But then I am a Yankees fan.

    As to the World Series records, http://www.baseball-reference.com/ has always broken out World Series records and as I recall the venerable Baseball Encyclopedia also did. My most recent copy is probably from around 1993 but still.

    Those early elimination games are not going to garner the interest you think they will in my opinion. Most fans will be watching their teams and the fans of the bottom dwellers are probably not going to show much more interest than they do now after a few years of watching the bottom dwellers not advancing.

    After the first round elimination, what do those four teams do? Are they playing meaningless games against a good team or each other? Do they get to go home? Whatís the deal? Do they play the 4th and 5th games of these elimination rounds even if one team took the first 3?

    I look forward to your league reorganization. In mine, I would eliminate 2-6 teams first. Get back to 24 teams. Poor Pittsburg, one of the oldest franchises would be one of the causalities. Tampa, Florida, Oakland, KC and the Nationals (Natinals) would all be candidates. If you cannot provide a grass field instead of turf, you will probably go. No deep thought here, just tossing out ideas. I would go ahead and phase in a hard cap and a hard floor. All teams must spend $75M to a maximum of $150M. Slowly bring the floor up without raising the ceiling faster than inflation.

    While I am at it, letís either eliminate the DH or make it universal. I would make it universal. Letís face the reality that 12-13 man pitching staffs are now standard and expand the roster by 3 for the season. Doing this and adding the DH to the NL will soften the blow of eliminating 2-6 teams for the union. If we eliminate only 4 teams, we are removing 100 major league jobs and a total of 160 as the 40 man roster goes. We are adding back 78 major league jobs and adding 12 larger salary positions in additional DHs. (There are now 14, we would have 26 when the change is made.)

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