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Baseball: No Time To Make a Sandwich

Updated: Apr 22, 2023

Simple fact, many suns ago baseball games were played with a solid pace. Games could last endlessly due to extra innings, but 'human rain delays' were frowned upon in baseball. Games on average were not all day endeavors and the sport had a national following across the States. It was America's pastime.

Baseball has languished the past thirty years in popularity as the NFL has become the sport many in the States will point to as their favorite game to watch. Although, American football it must be said can put you to sleep on a sofa just as easily as baseball due to the frequent stoppages in play, penalties being called, timeouts and commercial breaks - besides the danger of over indulging on chips, beer and other snacks. Who really has four hours to watch a game or desire to unless the contest is important and involves a team in which you have a distinct passion?

I blame Mike Hargrove for the problems baseball has suffered the past 40 years plus. The man was a human rain delay, I remember him stepping out of the batters box to fix his glove continuously in an era most batters did not practice this trait - nor did umpires allow it to happen. Hargrove was a good player, not great, but he gained an advantage by stepping out of the batters box before nearly every other pitch. Other players caught on, and slowly and surely baseball games started to last eternally. Perhaps it is too simple a perspective, but if you watch Hargrove bat on video via YouTube, you will surely notice his habits were not normal. He played from 1974 until 1985.

Suddenly the past couple of years baseball admitted it had a problem, it was hard to ignore because tv ratings were dying. Games were too long. But this year much to my astonishment, has seen new rule changes limiting batters time spent out of the box, pitchers being clocked, no 'shift' allowed in the infield and bases being made bigger in MLB. The games have now returned to 'normal' lengths and baseball can be watched without the danger of a day passing and waking up on the sofa late in the evening wondering what happened and having to ask questions. No longer can you get up and make a sandwich in the kitchen, return to the sofa and safely assume that nothing will have happened. Baseball is enjoyable again.

While some purists thought the 'new' rules would ruin the game because of the pitch clock being implemented, simply put baseball has returned to a contest which has a pace that can be enjoyed and life can be led again. A question and theory I have, and one that I am going to watch for in the coming months as this 2023 season moves along, is if pitchers somehow also become affected in a good way via their arm health because of the rule changes. This because I suspect the need to keep pitching delivery in focus and throw the ball within a certain time parameter will lead to better throwing mechanics and less strain on shoulders and elbows. Time will tell. Speaking of which, I need to find something else to do with the extra hour and half I have now that baseball games are finishing so quickly. Maybe I can trade the USD/JPY again.


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