Tuesday, January 17, 2017
In 1972, the Washington Senators packed up and moved down to Texas to become the Rangers. In the 45 years since the Senators’ departure, however, only a single other Major League Baseball franchise has relocated: the Montreal Expos (owned by MLB at the time) moved to Washington before the 2005 season and became the Nationals.
During that same 45-year period, meanwhile, the National Football League has seen the relocation of franchises on nine occasions (10 if Oakland completes their move to Las Vegas). The National Hockey League has featured nine moves of their own (including one merger); the NBA, eight.
There are quite a few reasons for MLB’s stability relative to the other leagues, including antitrust protection, willing local governments, and a little bit more patience when it comes to stadium issues. And baseball hasn’t always possessed such geographic consistency. Consider: the creation of the Rangers actually marked the end of a 20-year period that saw quite a bit of movement throughout Major League Baseball. Rarely did a move leave a city without a franchise — and for those cities left without teams, all had new teams in short order — but there was activity nonetheless.
Posted: January 17, 2017 at 02:55 PM | 25 comment(s)
Tuesday, January 10, 2017
MLB is an increasingly dominant hegemon on the American and the global baseball scene. That hegemony affects almost every pitch that is thrown in the United States, from youth baseball all the way up to the World Series. It is a product of a confluence of events largely outside the realm of baseball, including such developments as the civil rights movement and population shifts following World War II. MLB’s domination of the sport was not inevitable, but that is what has happened over the past fifty or sixty years. Just as it was not inevitable, it is also not irreversible.
Monday, December 12, 2016
It’s that time of year when Andy needs an appropriate venue (read: not the College Football Bowl Spectacular) to declare the pro game’s infinite superiority.
Lance Reddick! Lance him!
Posted: December 12, 2016 at 04:36 PM | 601 comment(s)
Friday, November 11, 2016
Fans have complained for years that games are too long, and they frequently express annoyance at the number of commercial breaks and video reviews. Last season, the average length of regular-season games, from kickoff to final whistle, was 3 hours 8 minutes, six minutes longer than in 2008.
Goodell said the league was considering a number of potential solutions to improve the pace of games, including running fewer advertisements and changing when they run. The league is also looking at ways to speed up video reviews by its officials as well as the time it takes referees to announce penalties on the field.
“We want to take as much what we call dead time, non-action out of the game, so that we can make the game more exciting,” Goodell said.
Posted: November 11, 2016 at 02:11 AM | 50 comment(s)
Monday, October 31, 2016
Austin Karp of SportsBusiness Journal reports that Game Five of the World Series between the Indians and Cubs beat the regular-season Eagles-Cowboys Sunday Night Football game in the ratings. Pretty decisively too: the Cubs and Indians generated a 15.3 rating. The Eagles-Cowboys: 11.6. It’s the first time a World Series game has beat the Sunday Night Football rating head-to-head since 2011.
There are a lot of people who have sent me this info and have asked me to write a “Hey, maybe baseball ISN’T dying” post. Or to, alternatively, write a “Football is Dying, You Guys” post. Given the issues the NFL has had this year with declining ratings, I suppose one could do that at least half-credibly.
But I’m not gonna read that much into it, really. Yes, the NFL has some challenges these days and, I suspect, there may be some oversaturation of football on TV that is starting to be felt, but I don’t see some serious new trend emerging out of this. Last night’s game was a possible clincher for a team that hasn’t had one in 68 years facing off against a team that hasn’t been in the World Series for 71 years.
Friday, September 09, 2016
Rather than just think about it, I decided to act. I asked four scouts who the best baseball player they saw who didn’t end up making their living on the diamond was, and whether or not they felt like they ever had a shot to sign them.
NL East Scout: Jake Locker — “He had as high of an upside as any player I scouted in the Northwest in that timeframe. That might not seem like much to you, but that region has produced some good players. Locker had everything. He was a top of the charts runner, he had a cannon of an arm, the power potential was obvious, so on and so forth. [Locker] was so good of athlete, it wouldn’t really shock me if he went out and put on a show like [Tebow]. Just a freak athlete.
Was there ever a shot?: “Oh yeah, when he was deciding between…I think it was Washington and USC where to play football, I think that what he was really deciding was whether or not he wanted to play baseball or not. I can’t prove it, but it was clear he loved Washington so much that I knew he if he committed to play there there was no shot. But for a moment there, there was a chance. A slim one, but a chance.”
Saturday, August 27, 2016
A place for those who would pollute the college football threads.
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