2.05.2012

If Baseball Were More Like Football

While millions of people around the globe are coming together tonight in order to worship the dueling gods of pigskins, cheesy dips for starchy snacks and advertisements featuring scantily clad females, I am spending it as I have spent many of the last few Super Sundays: waiting for pitchers and catchers to report.

However, my devotion to baseball and disdain for football is not terribly common among modern day sports fans, and I've often heard people whine that "if baseball were more like football I'd watch it more often..." So I thought it might be interesting to explore just what it would be like if baseball was indeed more like football.

If baseball was more like football...
Batting 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th...
  • your offense would just hand off the bat to the same dominating hitter again and again and again, but with the best hitters averaging success 3 out of 10 times--scores would drop dramatically.

  • your defense would be more concerned with finding ways to blindside the batter before he got out of the box than with catching the ball. 

  • every single play would end with an absurd amount of capering about the field: slashing throats for successful bunts; thumping chests after catching a routine pop-up; skipping, hopping, and waving arms to the multitudes after an intentional walk.

  • managers would feel obliged to come up with mass substitutions of absurdly specialized position players (i.e. a third-and-long-pulling guard turns into a two-out-right-handed-shift-second-baseman).

  • an entire nation of pundits would foam at the mouth for four months about one player's unconventional style of throwing the ball, and legions of otherwise rational people would blow a gasket with unwavering certainty that an unusual player sucks.
  • the greatest players of all time would be just as likely to retire to pursue acting careers and avoid life altering injuries as they would be to become legends.

  • the seventh-inning stretch would extend to a seventh-inning nap as bands march across the outfield, cheerleaders shimmy around the foul territory and fading pop stars croon a set from the pitcher's mound.

  • your manager would spend more time scowling at the voices coming through his headset and less time having gloriously goofy temper tantrums at home plate. 
Option A: Fat man looks sad                                   Option B: Fat man looks crazy

Easy choice...
  • teams would have to huddle to pick plays before each pitch ("okay, hit the ball on two, hit the ball on two...ready?...Break!")

  • --worst of all--the championship of a six month long season full ups and downs, twists and turns, would be reduced to "that-thing-that's-on-in-the-background-while-everybody-talks-about-a Budwieser-commercial."
What do you think? Am I missing out on a glorious alterante reality, or did I forget something that would drive you similarly crazy (leave a comment below! And don't forget to vote on the next members of the Heavenly Peanuts Hall of Fame (ballot at right)

2 comments:

  1. This is pretty awesome, Ben. Although I do appreciate the super bowl as a game, and the sport of football on the whole, your take is quite smart and entertaining. Thanks for sharing! Hope you're well, by the by.

    Lance.

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  2. I swear we are distantly related...my thoughts come out of your computer on a regular basis. And my husband and I are smitten with Downton Abbey as well; we live for Maggie Smith's next zinger. So glad we found you and "Stinky" thru Twitter!

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