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Pace Of Play Newsbeat

Sunday, October 22, 2023

A Brief History of Baseball Games Take Too Long

In November 1924, Thomas J. Hickey, president of the minor league American Association, was convinced that the length of baseball games was a problem and a threat to his league’s coffers. Worrying that fans would stop coming out to games, he said, “Umpires do their best at all times to hurry games but additional incentives are needed to impress upon the players the fact that the public prefers shorter ball games”.1 I don’t have the time stats of his league, but I think we can presume that minor league games weren’t so wildly different from the major leagues that they were playing 4 hour games. The average time of game in the majors that year? 1:54.

A dozen years later, Rogers Hornsby, who famously had a healthy work-life balance with baseball, complained about the livened ball and how long games took:

“They say the fans want more baseball. That’s all right. But why not give them the kind of baseball that keeps them on edge for nine innings? Now you see them start walking out in the fifth inning of the second game of a double-header. They get too much baseball. Games last too long and are too one-sided.2

The average game time in 1936? It jumped to 2 hours and 7 minutes.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: October 22, 2023 at 05:29 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: pace of play

Tuesday, August 29, 2023

It’s the baseball game that never ends—on purpose and for charity

I’m guessing Steve Traschel will pitch?

Picture this: It’s 3 a.m. and the world is asleep, save for night owls, insomniacs and the trucks downshifting on the highway. Everything is quiet and still.

Everything, that is, except for a small baseball field in Kansas City, where 60 men and women will be playing non-stop, night and day this weekend to raise over $300,000 for charity.

The idea came to Scott Reinardy, a true baseball diehard (he makes his own baseball bats) and professor at the William Allen White School of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Kansas, during a local baseball tournament he played at the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum last summer.

“We had a morning game and an afternoon game, and then that night I had a league game, too,” Reinardy told over Zoom recently. “So, I’m leaving the ballpark at 11 o’clock that night and I’ve been at ballparks since 8 a.m. I just had this thought: What was the longest game?”


RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: August 29, 2023 at 11:35 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: pace of play



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