September 08, 2014

November #WorldSeries? #MLB dawdles on schedule as well as games

Major League Baseball has come under increasing fire for the increasing length of its games.

Maybe there's a mindset at work?

MLB's 2015 schedule would run to Nov. 5 if the World Series would go to a seventh game.

That would be one day later than the finale of the 2001 World Series, which capped a season delayed near the end of the year by the 9/11 attacks, and which had plenty of its heroics from Randy Johnson, Luis Gonzales in his battle with Mariano RiveraCurt Schilling, and, oh, that semi-divine shortstop guy with the Yankees. Jeter, I think? (Actually, with a slash of .179/.259/.438, The Cap'n was not only less than divine, he was arguably the goat, despite Joe Buck trotting out the "Mr. November" line. Speaking of, I'd be OK if Buck joined Tim McCarver in baseball broadcasting retirement.)

As David Schoenfield notes, this increases the risk of snow problems if one or two of the cities playing is a northern one and domeless.
Consider this: The 1955 World Series, when the Brooklyn Dodgers finally beat the New York Yankees, began on Sept. 28. Game 7 at Yankee Stadium took place on Oct. 4 with temperatures in the high 60s. It was a Fall Classic. Not a Winter Classic.


New commissioner Rob Manfred has to hope that the Minnesota Twins suck as much next year as this. The Cleveland Indians, Pittsburgh Pirates, Boston Red Sox, Detroit Tigers, and Colorado Rockies probably aren't high on his World Series wish list either.

Probably the worst possible matchup would be Minnesota-Colorado, a mix of the highest possibility of outright cold and the highest possibility of unpredictable mountain snow. Detroit or Cleveland vs. Pittsburgh, with a good shot of sleet or freezing rain in early November, wouldn't be fun, either. And, unlike Minnesota-Colorado, either one of those AL teams against the Pirates is not out of the realm of probability.

I'm old enough to remember the first World Series arguably affected by night baseball with bad weather: the 1979 showdown between the Pirates and the Baltimore Orioles.

It was a fielding slopfest. Six errors in the opening game. Seventeen errors for the series, with each of the seven games having at least one error. Fortunately, those fielding problems didn't totally open the scoring gates, as there were "just" five unearned runs.

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