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Tuesday, March 10, 2020

Six Modest Proposals: A Reply to Rob Manfred

(Co-author’s Note: Despite my name alone being displayed under the title, and the viewpoint the text will assume, this article is a collaboration with my friend and occasional THT contributor Paul Golba. The ideas originate mainly with him; the writing originates with me.)

Nobody can accuse Rob Manfred of being unwilling to try fresh ideas. In an offseason that already saw several rules changes to MLB, the Commissioner floated a proposal for a massive change to the sport’s playoff structure. The plan reportedly won raves from television networks that might be in a position to air games from the augmented playoff schedule, as well as from MLB Network’s Bob Costas. Reaction from actual fans has been decidedly more mixed.

In Manfred’s plan, there would be three division winners and four Wild Cards in each league. The team with the best record in each league would have a first-round bye. The second-best division winner would then choose its first-round opponent from the three lowest Wild Cards, followed by the remaining division winner getting next choice. (These choices would be made on a live broadcast.) The top Wild Card would get the leftover opponent. The teams would play best-of-three series, with the higher seed hosting all three games. The winners would join the bye teams in the League Division round, and the postseason would proceed as it does now.

Matt Swartz made a prompt reply to the Manfred proposal on our pages, offering his ideas for how to run an expanded playoff system. That article was still in the future, though, when I had my first discussion of the matter with Paul Golba, my frequent co-Grand Tourist and periodic co-author. We shared a dislike for the scheme, though not everything it proposed rubbed either of us the wrong way.

Rob Manfred is willing to consider eating Irish children as a solution to any and all problems concerning Major League Baseball.

QLE Posted: March 10, 2020 at 01:29 AM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: double duty, final four, manfred is thinking about it, nascar, playoffs, soccer

Saturday, February 29, 2020

OT Soccer Thread - Spring 2020

Other thread isn’t accepting comments so it’s time for a new thread!

Second Legs of the round of 16;

March 10;
Valencia-Atalanta (1-4)
Leipzig-Tottenham (1-0)

March 11;
PSG-Dortmund (1-2)
Liverpool-Atleti (0-1)

March 17;
ManCity-Real Madrid (2-1)
Juventus-Lyon (0-1)

March 18;
Bayern-Chelsea (3-0)
Barca-Napoli (1-1)

Jose Is Absurdly Chatty Posted: February 29, 2020 at 07:40 PM | 186 comment(s)
  Beats: off topic, soccer

Thursday, February 27, 2020

MLS owners predict league will surpass MLB, Premier League

NEW YORK (AP) — Three days ahead of the Major League Soccer’s 25th season, owners, executives and players gathered for a day of unbridled optimism and hyperbole.

Los Angeles FC lead owner Larry Berg predicted MLS will surpass Major League Baseball in popularity during the next 10 years and Inter Miami managing owner Jorge Mas maintained it will be of higher quality than the Premier League and La Liga by 2045.

MLS anticipates soccer’s status in the U.S. will be boosted when the Americans co-host the 2026 World Cup with Mexico and Canada.

“We definitely have the demographics in our favor, both in terms of youth and diversity. So I think we’ll pass baseball and hockey and be the No. 3 sport in the U.S. behind football and basketball,” Berg said Wednesday at the league’s kickoff event.

Sort of prediction that seems bound to backfire on those making it, isn’t it?

 

QLE Posted: February 27, 2020 at 01:10 AM | 67 comment(s)
  Beats: hype machine, mls, predictions, soccer

Saturday, February 08, 2020

NYCFC revives plan for soccer field near Yankee Stadium

NEW YORK (AP) — Major League Soccer’s New York City team and the Yankees have revived plans for a 25,000-seat soccer stadium near the baseball park in the Bronx, seven years after a proposal fell through.

New York City’s Economic Development Corp. said Friday it is attempting to put together a deal that would include a soccer stadium built on the site of current parking lots along what was the first-base side of old Yankee Stadium. The old ballpark was torn down in 2009 and replaced by parkland to make up for park space used for the new Yankee Stadium, just to the north.

The project would include land currently occupied by a factory and a ramp to the Major Deegan Expressway.

Maddd Equities would partner in the project, which envisions a hotel, affordable housing, a school and retail. Bondholders of the parking lots, which have performed poorly, also are part of the deal, which would cut parking spaces from 9,300 to about 6,300.

 

QLE Posted: February 08, 2020 at 01:30 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: soccer, yankee stadium

Tuesday, December 31, 2019

OT - Soccer Thread - January, 2020

As we flip the calendar to 2020, there are many things we do not yet know about the year to come. One thing, though, is certain: there will be lots of complaining about VAR. And I for one am looking forward to it.*


*I am not actually looking forward to it.

The Marksist Posted: December 31, 2019 at 04:38 PM | 715 comment(s)
  Beats: ot, soccer

Friday, October 04, 2019

Two Playoff Teams, Two New Stadiums and One Great Divide

Two maps tell the story.

First, John Schuerholz stared into a camera and stunned a city. Unflinching, the Braves’ GM turned president, whose teams had won 14 straight division titles, explained to Atlanta baseball fans on Nov. 11, 2013, that the club was abandoning the area just south of downtown, its home since 1966. No longer would the Braves play at Turner Field, where skyscrapers looming over left center made it feel as if the entire city was watching. Instead, the franchise would build a stadium 14 miles north, in Cobb County. “This new ballpark,” Schuerholz said of what would come to be called SunTrust Park, “will be in the heart of Braves Country.”

Accompanying the announcement, the team released a map showing where, precisely, Braves Country was—and, notably, where it wasn’t. That view of the greater Atlanta area was speckled with red dots, each one indicating the home of a 2012 ticket buyer, including season-ticket holders. Only a smattering of red appeared to the east, west and south of Turner Field, while thousands of dots congealed into a ribbon above downtown that expanded into a wide swath in the half-dozen suburban and exurban counties to the north. The new stadium would be closer to the middle of that mass, which happened to embody an older, whiter and more conservative population than the city proper. Those northern suburbs were fast diversifying, yet many in Atlanta—particularly in its black population—felt slighted by the decision, their perspectives colored by decades of racial and political tension between city and sprawl.

Five months later MLS commissioner Don Garber, Falcons owner Arthur Blank and then-mayor Kasim Reed proclaimed in their own press conference that downtown Atlanta would be home to MLS’s 22nd franchise, and the new club, Atlanta United, would take the pitch in 2017, the same year the Braves headed to Cobb. The soccer team would play in the same new $1.6 billion stadium the Falcons would soon call home, but United would be no afterthought. The facility would be designed to accommodate the beautiful game from the start. Pushing back against skepticism and pointing to an influx of young professionals near Atlanta’s urban core, Blank assured MLS’s leaders he could fill the massive venue, even in a market known for lukewarm enthusiasm toward pro sports. Reed boasted that his city’s foreign-born (and, seemingly implied, soccer-loving) population was growing at the second-fastest rate in the U.S. Garber himself insisted these factors combined to make downtown an ideal MLS incubator. The city “embodies what we call a ‘new America,’” he said, “an America that’s blossoming with ethnic diversity.”

A consideration of sport and space- of interest for those who wish for a long-form read.

 

 

QLE Posted: October 04, 2019 at 12:21 AM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: braves, soccer, stadiums, suntrust park

Tuesday, October 01, 2019

OT- Soccer Thread- October 2019

Hey, when I have to submit the thread we get a bad intro, that’s just how it works.

jmurph Posted: October 01, 2019 at 01:55 PM | 1125 comment(s)
  Beats: soccer

 

 

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