Monday, October 25, 2010

Playoff Baseball and Why I Can't Root For San Fran

I love playoff baseball. Why this sport plays a 162 game schedule, to sift through all the statistical anomalies only to allow 4 teams in from each league boggles my mind.

Now, I'm not advocating 8 teams per league like hockey (and maybe baseketball, I checked out on the NBA years ago), but maybe 6 teams per league?

Why not? The two best teams in baseball aren't in the World Series anyway, and I'm not even saying that with negative connotations. I'm going to try to watch every out of the Rangers-Giants series. I find it fascinating. Hitting (and Cliff Lee) versus Pitching (and some waiver wire fodder).

This series is going to be great. Very low rated, but fantastic baseball. This I assure you. The Giants pitching will make the Texas squad as low scoring as their own team of misfit infielders and outfielders.

Now back to the playoff system. Can we just fix this up? I don't care how you do it. I wish the solution was adding two more teams to make four 4-team divisions in each league, but I get the sense teams would be contracted before they were added. I just don't like the 6 team NL Central nor the two 4-team Wests.

In my dream scenario, you'd go all out on realignment with 4 divisions, and 4 division winners with 2 wild card teams, much like the NFL does. Two best division winners get a bye and we go 7 game series in every round. I really don't understand the point of the 5 game series. You play all year, 6 months, 162 games, just to reduce each team to positions players plus 2 or 3 starting pitchers and a couple of bullpen guys? This is nonsensical. 7 game series. Everyone wins. Oh, and schedule in some day-night double headers during the summer to get the regular season wrapped up in late September and get these series going a week earlier.

Do you see why this is a great idea? You pull 4 more teams into the "playoff fever" and the best teams are still saved from being bounced by "a team that doesn't deserve to be in the playoffs" (I'm calling this now, because I know how some of you think about adding more teams to the playoffs).

So there you go, let's get on it. More playoff teams, one more round of playoff baseball. If need be eliminate some games from the regular season schedule. Maybe we can distance ourselves from the shamed record book by retreating back to a little bit shorter schedule to include more action packed playoff baseball.

You with me?

Now back to the World Series. I'm pulling for the Rangers. I like what Nolan Ryan did there, the attitude he instilled in that staff. I like the Cliff Lee angle and I like that offense. Now, I'm not hating on the Giants, and I'm sure 75% of America considers them the underdogs and will be cheering for them, but I just can't get behind that team.

Yes, they have GREAT pitching, but I can't support a team GMd by one of the worst GMs in baseball that put together a team of Juan Uribe, Edgar Renteria, Freddy Sanchez, Travis Ishikawa, Cody Ross, etc, etc. I just can't. I love Lincecum and Cain and Wilson, but I just can't support this team.

Now for my prediction. I've got the Rangers in 5. I believe all the games will be close, but in the end, I see the Rangers bats defying the odds and overpowering the Giants arms.

Side note, can we get Will Clark to DH for both teams? I'd settle for letting him throw out the first pitch and maybe get some light pinch-hitting duty.

I miss you Will.


  1. I miss Will too... he's my favorite "non-Athletic/non-Padre" player from the 80's. As for your suggestion...

    I'm torn. At heart... I'm super traditional... in other words... I hate change.

    However, you make some great points and an extra round in baseball wouldn't hurt anyone.

    As for who I'm rooting for... I'm leaning towards the Giants... but honestly... I'm just glad the Yankees were knocked out! The baseball gods have answered my prayers.

  2. We're all traditional, that's why we love this game. It's rooted in tradition and numbers and rivalries, etc.

    One thing I left out . . . no more daytime baseball playoff games. I want to have the opportunity to watch any game I want. I don't mind making decisions between two games, but I don't like having 3PM games.

    Same goes for games ending at 1AM, but that topic has been beaten to death.