PDA

View Full Version : A sharp, crisp game...



919191
05-22-2008, 02:54 AM
Here is part of an article on MLB's efforts to speed up games. The whole article is here.http://www.bizofbaseball.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=2200&Itemid=42

I love a clean. crisp game.:rolleyes:

MLB Addresses Pace of the Game Rules


Written by Maury Brown
Wednesday, 21 May 2008
Following a discussion on pace of game at last week’s Owners Meetings in Milwaukee, Major League Baseball today held a series of conference calls with each Club’s field manager, general manager and in-game entertainment staff and with all Major League umpire crew chiefs. The calls were organized by MLB’s Baseball Operations Department, headed by Executive Vice President Jimmie Lee Solomon.

During the calls, Major League Baseball advised all participants that umpires will be more vigilant in the enforcement of matters pertaining to the improvement of pace of game efforts, including, but not limited to, Official Baseball Rules 6.02(a), 6.02(b), 6.02(c) and 8.04.

“Improving pace of game is an important goal that will be emphasized,” said Baseball Commissioner Allan H. (Bud) Selig. “Clubs and fans share the common objective of seeing a game that is played as sharply and crisply as possible. We have reminded our staff and our umpires to enforce the rules in order to achieve the progress we need in this area.”

The Baumer
05-22-2008, 03:07 AM
I like mine extra crispy.

redsrule2500
05-22-2008, 04:36 AM
Bud's an idiot.

Unassisted
05-22-2008, 10:22 AM
It has been discussed in these parts before that efforts to speed up the game are intended to improve the game's appeal to young fans. Young fans have said repeatedly in focus groups that baseball moves too slow for their taste. I don't want my favorite sport to have trouble finding an audience among young people, because that means eventually it will have trouble finding a TV network willing to show the games.

Furthermore, it has been shown that the game moves more slowly than it used to. The average MLB game in 1983 was 20 minutes shorter than the average game in 2008, so it's not like speeding things up is messing with tradition.

What's not to like here?

gonelong
05-22-2008, 11:09 AM
What's not to like here?

A lazy game on a Sunny Sunday afternoon? No problem. A 4 hour game on a Wednesday night with 1.5 hour drive afterwards. No thanks.

GL

George Anderson
05-22-2008, 11:17 AM
Maybe its just me but it seems like a college game goes alot faster than a MLB game does. Part of the appeal to watching a college game for me anyway is it seems to lack the slowness that MLB games have.

Roy Tucker
05-22-2008, 11:22 AM
I forget the numbers, but much of the additional time added to the game since 1983 are longer and more frequent TV breaks.

At-bats are longer now. More batters are selective about what they swing at and grind-it-out at-bats are more common.

I've always wondered why relief pitchers get to warm up on the field when they come in to pitch. Aren't they already warm? No other players entering the game (pinch hitters, pinch runners, etc.) don't get to do this. Particularly in the late innings when managers start to go all Tony LaRussa. Just bring 'em in from the pen and start pitching.

REDREAD
05-22-2008, 11:38 AM
I would like to see them institute some kind of limit to the number of times a player can step out of the batter's box and the pitcher can step off the rubber. Or some kind of clock that requires the pitcher to throw the ball (when no runners on base).

Realistically, we aren't going to be able to shorten the commerical breaks.

I don't have a problem with the reliever throwing a few warm up pitches on the real mound. That gives him a chance to get the "feel" of the mound, which might be different than the bullpen mound.

Dom Heffner
05-22-2008, 11:41 AM
They could make the games one hour, I still don't know that baseball is that exciting.

It's my all-time favorite sport, but I find myself looking over box scores and watching all the games live with the CBSSportsline Gamecenter up.

I like the data, not the pitch by pitch.

I went to a Rays game a few weeks ago and watched the eye candy more than anything. The second I got home, I checked out the box scores for the entire day and got more out of it, honestly.

RedsManRick
05-22-2008, 11:52 AM
For me it's not about the overall length of the game, it's the pace. I've seen 2 hour games which were pretty boring and incredibly exciting 4 hour games. My biggest concern in regards to pace is pitching changes and visits to the mound.

Players are big boys, let them play the game. You don't need a fat manager to waddle over there and pat him on the butt because he gave up a few hits. You want to use some strategy, that's what signals are for. In football and basketball the coach only has a small number of chances to stop the game and discuss the situation. Otherwise, there's a clock urging the game on. In soccer and hockey, there is no stoppage of play. These work.

Baseball's biggest problem isn't about TV timeouts or extra long at bats. It's a bunch of people standing around doing nothing for minutes on end. Fix that problem first.

macro
05-22-2008, 11:53 AM
I've always wondered why relief pitchers get to warm up on the field when they come in to pitch. Aren't they already warm? No other players entering the game (pinch hitters, pinch runners, etc.) don't get to do this. Particularly in the late innings when managers start to go all Tony LaRussa. Just bring 'em in from the pen and start pitching.

I agree completely, or at least reduce the number of pitches to, say, three or four.


“Clubs and fans share the common objective of seeing a game that is played as sharply and crisply as possible. "

No one plays the game more crisply than this guy:

http://www.unionleader.com/uploads/media-items/2006/april/402p3ccrisp.jpg

Hey, somebody had to say it. :dunno:

KronoRed
05-22-2008, 12:17 PM
Lets go to 3 balls for a walk and 2 strikes for an out ;)

M2
05-22-2008, 01:17 PM
There will always be players who slow the game down. You simply cannot make El Duque throw a pitch until his sundial says it's time to throw a pitch. I'm surprised he doesn't stop to take in fluids between each pitch (he should wear one of those hiking fluid packs on his back). He also surely would like to be fanned with palm fronds. You can ask umps to herd the cats, but don't expect a herd of cats to be the result of those efforts.

As others have already noted, longer commercial breaks and hitters doing a better job of working counts are the main culprits in the games taking longer. No one's going to do anything about that. The one game-elongating thing that can be addressed is mid-inning pitching switches. Managers take the air out of the game with the endless pitching matchups late in the contest. They make the game drag right when it's getting to its most interesting point.

Bill James has already come up with the solution - one mid-inning pitcher switch per game. The great thing about that is it would add a lot beyond just the time savings. It adds a whole new strategy component to the game - is this the spot where the manager should use his one switch? It would also change the nature of relievers from one-out specialists to full-inning generalists, which might actually lead to teams carrying fewer relievers (something the game sorely needs). Best of all, it would add drama. If you've got an offense getting to a pitcher and he's got no cavalry coming to his rescue, can he suck it up and get himself out of the inning?

They might have to add a kill rule circuit breaker (e.g. the pitcher can be relieved if his team is losing as the other side has batted around), but that's a simple modification to an idea that absolutely needs to be implemented if MLB is serious about putting a pacier game on display.

flyer85
05-22-2008, 01:20 PM
hitters doing a better job of working counts I assume you meant other than the Reds. :D

WebScorpion
05-22-2008, 01:43 PM
There will always be players who slow the game down. You simply cannot make El Duque throw a pitch until his sundial says it's time to throw a pitch. I'm surprised he doesn't stop to take in fluids between each pitch (he should wear one of those hiking fluid packs on his back). He also surely would like to be fanned with palm fronds. You can ask umps to herd the cats, but don't expect a herd of cats to be the result of those efforts.

As others have already noted, longer commercial breaks and hitters doing a better job of working counts are the main culprits in the games taking longer. No one's going to do anything about that. The one game-elongating thing that can be addressed is mid-inning pitching switches. Managers take the air out of the game with the endless pitching matchups late in the contest. They make the game drag right when it's getting to its most interesting point.

Bill James has already come up with the solution - one mid-inning pitcher switch per game. The great thing about that is it would add a lot beyond just the time savings. It adds a whole new strategy component to the game - is this the spot where the manager should use his one switch? It would also change the nature of relievers from one-out specialists to full-inning generalists, which might actually lead to teams carrying fewer relievers (something the game sorely needs). Best of all, it would add drama. If you've got an offense getting to a pitcher and he's got no cavalry coming to his rescue, can he suck it up and get himself out of the inning?

They might have to add a kill rule circuit breaker (e.g. the pitcher can be relieved if his team is losing as the other side has batted around), but that's a simple modification to an idea that absolutely needs to be implemented if MLB is serious about putting a pacier game on display.

What you are proposing is the death of the LOOGY!?!? Heresy! ;)

Far East
05-22-2008, 02:03 PM
With all of its warts, 4 hours of baseball is still twice as good as 2 hours.

RedsManRick
05-22-2008, 02:04 PM
With all of its warts, 4 hours of baseball is still twice as good as 2 hours.

Depends. Is it actually 4 hours of baseball or is it the same 2 hours of baseball interspersed with a lot of "white space"? I'm all for extra baseball if the extra actually is baseball.

Roy Tucker
05-22-2008, 02:22 PM
For me it's not about the overall length of the game, it's the pace. I've seen 2 hour games which were pretty boring and incredibly exciting 4 hour games. My biggest concern in regards to pace is pitching changes and visits to the mound.

Players are big boys, let them play the game. You don't need a fat manager to waddle over there and pat him on the butt because he gave up a few hits. You want to use some strategy, that's what signals are for. In football and basketball the coach only has a small number of chances to stop the game and discuss the situation. Otherwise, there's a clock urging the game on. In soccer and hockey, there is no stoppage of play. These work.

Baseball's biggest problem isn't about TV timeouts or extra long at bats. It's a bunch of people standing around doing nothing for minutes on end. Fix that problem first.

I could go along with this. What makes pitchers so special? Does the manager call time in the middle of an at-bat to go talk to his hitter? Does he call time to go out to talk to a baserunner and remind him there are 2 outs?

Let the manager have 2 mound visits per game. All the other times, do the lefty-righty motion from the dugout, call the guy in, and then pitch. He usually knows he's going to pull the guy anyhow. We don't need the ceremonial handing over of the ball and pat on the butt.

ochre
05-22-2008, 02:25 PM
I imagine there is a strong correlation between league OPS and length of games :)

Chip R
05-22-2008, 02:29 PM
It has been discussed in these parts before that efforts to speed up the game are intended to improve the game's appeal to young fans. Young fans have said repeatedly in focus groups that baseball moves too slow for their taste. I don't want my favorite sport to have trouble finding an audience among young people, because that means eventually it will have trouble finding a TV network willing to show the games.

Furthermore, it has been shown that the game moves more slowly than it used to. The average MLB game in 1983 was 20 minutes shorter than the average game in 2008, so it's not like speeding things up is messing with tradition.

What's not to like here?

Baseball is a sport that isn't going to appeal to that kind of a fan no matter what. Basketball has running and jumping and shooting and shot clocks. There's got to be a shot taken every 24-40 seconds which speeds up the pace of the game. Football has collisions every 45-60 seconds and that's very appealing as well. Nothing offensively may happen for several minutes in baseball. Theoretically, a batter can stand at the plate as long as he wants as long as he keeps fouling off pitches. You could knock games down to 2.5 hours and people are oing to complain it's too slow. M2's right. It's not the length, it's the pace of the game.

REDREAD
05-22-2008, 04:11 PM
Bill James has already come up with the solution - one mid-inning pitcher switch per game. The great thing about that is it would add a lot beyond just the time savings. It adds a whole new strategy component to the game - is this the spot where the manager should use his one switch? It would also change the nature of relievers from one-out specialists to full-inning generalists, which might actually lead to teams carrying fewer relievers (something the game sorely needs). Best of all, it would add drama. If you've got an offense getting to a pitcher and he's got no cavalry coming to his rescue, can he suck it up and get himself out of the inning?
.

I don't know if I like this. First of all, I'm going to assume there's an exception if the pitcher gets hurt.

Let's say the manager uses up his one mid-inning switch in the 5th inning.. Ceuto starts the inning at 80 pitches, but is now at 120. So he gets relieved with 2 outs.. Now, the manager is stuck with having to keep the same guy in the entire inning. He brings Bray or Coffey in for the 8th. The guy just doesn't have it, but he has no choice but to let that reliever pitch for 30 minutes and throw a ton of pitches, despite giving up 12 runs.. It lengthens the game, turns it into a blowout, makes it impossible to control pitcher workload, and removes strategy. I don't mind managers doing the LaRussa thing.. Sure, it makes an extra commerical break, but that's not what's eating the bulk of the game up..

dabvu2498
05-22-2008, 04:14 PM
I believe James' suggestion included the idea that pitchers could be removed after a run had scored.

So you could still have this scenario:

Bases loaded
Pitching change
Walk, run scored
Bases loaded
Another pitching change
Walk, run scored
Another pitching change
and so on.

But if the relief pitcher got an out, he has to stay in until the end of the inning or a run is allowed.

Rojo
05-22-2008, 04:42 PM
but he has no choice but to let that reliever pitch for 30 minutes and throw a ton of pitches, despite giving up 12 runs.. It lengthens the game, turns it into a blowout, makes it impossible to control pitcher workload, and removes strategy. I don't mind managers doing the LaRussa thing.. Sure, it makes an extra commerical break, but that's not what's eating the bulk of the game up..

James (and M2) addressed this.

I posted all of James' reforms several years ago on here and it was met with snark and "I-can't-get-enough-baseball" platitudes.

I love Citizen Kane. Add 20 minutes of Orson Welles scratching his butt and I'll love it less.

ochre
05-22-2008, 05:27 PM
I love Citizen Kane. Add 20 minutes of Orson Welles scratching his butt and I'll love it less.
But that could lead to a whole series of new theories as to "Rosebud"...

TeamBoone
05-22-2008, 06:00 PM
Baseball is baseball... it just is. The chess game is part of it's appeal. Just leave it alone.

Rojo
05-22-2008, 06:24 PM
Baseball is baseball... it just is. The chess game is part of it's appeal. Just leave it alone.

It doesn't take a Kasparov to constantly shift lefty against lefty, righty against righty.

KronoRed
05-22-2008, 09:36 PM
I imagine there is a strong correlation between league OPS and length of games :)

Darn walk takers slowing everything down.

redsrule2500
05-23-2008, 06:46 AM
Maybe its just me but it seems like a college game goes alot faster than a MLB game does. Part of the appeal to watching a college game for me anyway is it seems to lack the slowness that MLB games have.

I would be much more into college games if they didn't use metal bats. I can't stand metal bats.

redsrule2500
05-23-2008, 06:48 AM
Baseball is a sport that isn't going to appeal to that kind of a fan no matter what. Basketball has running and jumping and shooting and shot clocks. There's got to be a shot taken every 24-40 seconds which speeds up the pace of the game. Football has collisions every 45-60 seconds and that's very appealing as well. Nothing offensively may happen for several minutes in baseball. Theoretically, a batter can stand at the plate as long as he wants as long as he keeps fouling off pitches. You could knock games down to 2.5 hours and people are oing to complain it's too slow. M2's right. It's not the length, it's the pace of the game.

Thank you!! It takes a smarter fan to appreciate baseball, IMO. :thumbup:

Unassisted
05-24-2008, 07:54 PM
http://www.bostonherald.com/sports/baseball/red_sox/view.bg?articleid=1096055


Players slow to accept Major League Baseball’s new speed rule
By Michael Silverman | Saturday, May 24, 2008 | http://www.bostonherald.com |

Boston Red Sox

OAKLAND, Calif. - The Red Sox [team stats] got caught in a speed trap last night.

They were busted for going too slow.

Hitting coach Dave Magadan was ejected in the sixth inning of the Red Sox’ 8-3 loss to the Oakland Athletics for mouthing off too much to home plate umpire Tim Tschida, who had just prevented J.D. Drew [stats] from going back to the on-deck circle to apply more pine tar to his bat.

It turned out that Drew was guilty of a new no-no for batters, a directive from Major League Baseball in which batters are forbidden from leaving the batter’s box once they enter it. The idea is to speed up the game and Sox manager Terry Francona said the team had been warned that umpires would be enforcing it this weekend.

The players said they had no idea but now that they know, they have a pretty poor opinion of it.

“They’re trying to speed up the game?” said first baseman Kevin Youkilis [stats]. “For what reason? They made us go to Japan, why do they want us to speed up the game? If they want to speed up the game, why don’t they stop having commercials, that would do it.”

Youkilis was just getting warmed up.

“So guys can’t get pine tar but pitchers can still get rosin?” he said. “There’s nothing you can do to speed up the game. It seems like they’re blaming the hitters again but it’s not the hitter’s fault. This whole speeding up the game is just stupid - the game of baseball is a game of no time. Why do we need to speed it up?”

Count Dustin Pedroia [stats] as being in the pro-offense, anti-clock camp with Youkilis.

“I think that’s a little ridiculous,” Pedroia said. “We don’t want J.D. to take a swing and throw his bat into the stands and hit a kid or an old lady.”

Drew looked quite sour about becoming an unwitting guinea pig for the new rule.

“Nobody really knows anything about it,” the right fielder said of being stopped from getting more pine tar.

“I’ve been able to do it my whole career.”

Francona appeared resigned that for at least the next couple of days, Red Sox batters will have to be on their toes and in the box for as long as their at-bats last, without interruption.

“We don’t want to get into arguments over non-baseball issues,” the manager said.