How was your week?

Posted: April 23, 2023 by Sports Time Radio in sports

On the weekends for me I’m lucky enough to watch multiple Major League Baseball games. In general, I don’t get to see the entire game, but I get to watch the majority of it. This is a good thing for me as baseball is my favorite sport to watch.

Yesterday was no different for me. After I finished watch the New York Yankees beat the Toronto Blue Jays 3-2 on the MLB Network. After that game I was able to flip over and watch quite a few innings of the Los Angeles Dodgers 9-4 win over the Chicago Cubs. I then went over to Fox to watch their Saturday game of the week which in my area was the Chicago White Sox at the Tampa Bay Rays.

When Fox airs these games they usually used an announcer from one of the teams that are playing. In this case Jason Benetti was doing play by play. Benetti is the White Sox regular play by play announcer along with Stev Stone. I’m not 100% sure who the color commentator for the game was, but I’m pretty sure it was Tom Verducci. I believe that Verducci is still a sportswriter, but I don’t know who he currently writes for. I know that Verducci has done color commentary on baseball games for both Fox and the MLB Network, so I’m pretty sure he was on the call yesterday.

As the game moved along it was inevitable that the announcers would start to discuss the rule changes that Major Lague Baseball instituted this past off season. Nothing really came of this conversation until the game went into extra innings.

Now in general I don’t watch extra innings of a baseball game because I still believe that starting an inning with a runner on 2nd base is one of the stupidest rules in any sport. Yesterday for one reason or another I had the game on as they went into extra innings and Verducci suggested a rule change that was even stupider than starting an inning with a runner on 2nd base.

Verducci suggested that in extra innings of a baseball game that the team that’s at bat should start at the top of their batting order no matter where they left off in the 9th inning. Now he didn’t go into any detail on his idea which meant to me he hadn’t thought it through and just threw it out there to have something to say and it was quite easy to tell that this idea wasn’t thought threw very well.

Now this is sort of done at the lower minor league levels when a major league player is there on a rehab assignment. I those cases the player on the rehab assignment will lead off every inning to get extra at bats, but like I said that’s at the lower minor league levels not in the major leagues.

After the suggestion Verducci tried to compare it to an NBA or NFL overtime game, but it didn’t make sense. I don’t see the National Basketball Association adding extra fouls to their rules to allow a star player to come back into an overtime game if he’s fouled out. The comparison to the National Football League made even less sense as he tried to explain that the best players are always on the field in overtime. Of course, that couldn’t be the case as some of a team’s best players play offense while some of their best players play defense and they’re not on the field at the same time.

Since this wasn’t a clearly thought-out idea by Verducci so it’s unclear if he meant that at the start of every extra inning a team would go back to the top of its batting order. If that was the case the batters at the top of a team’s order could get five, six or possible in some case seven at bats while the hitters at the bottom of the order would get four at bats. I’m not sure about you, but that doesn’t seem like baseball to me.

Of course, Verducci and Benetti then tried to play to what would be considered the casual fan as they went on to explain that people pay good money to see the star players. It was clear at this point that they were just pandering to try and make this idea sound decent.

Jump in here and let me know what you think of this extra inning idea. Would you like to see a team start at the top of their batting order in extra innings?

As for the other rule changes MLB put in for this season, I haven’t had any real issues with them. I actually enjoy the game moving along faster because of the pitch clock, but to be fair I would still be watching even if they did put that rule in. I understand that MLB wanted more offense, so they banned defensive shifts. I’m not sure if it’s produced more offense and I’ve always been under the belief that if MLB players are the best at what they do they should be able to make the adjustments necessary to hit against a shift. I’m currently undecided on MLB making the bases larger. I know they said that they were doing it for safety reason, but I believe that they made this rule change to not only bring back the stolen base, but to also add more offense to the game.

I’d be interested to know how you’re feeling about the new rule baseball out in for this season now that you’ve seen them in action. I know that it’s just a small sample size since each team has only played about 20 games, but I think it’s enough games for you to be leaning one way or another on these new rules.

Don’t forget to look me up on Twitter, I’m @Burketime.

  1. The pitch clock rule has certainly speeded up the game and has led to a huge increase in stolen bases as well. But some of the umpire’s decisions haven’t been well thought out and have been unfair to say the least. Right now, they haven’t cost teams anything but what if it happens in a playoff game.
    I don’t know about you, but there seems to be a huge proliferation of cheap shots in the NBA playoffs this season. Just asking why??


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s