MLB 2019: Can't Hurdle the Turtle


Better yet, make the fucking pitchers learn to bat. Heaven forbid they should be complete baseball players.


Man the legend of Carlos Zambrano was forged off a series of massive dingers.

And god damn if there isn’t some great tension and strategy when it’s late innings of a close game and the pitcher is coming to bat. If you pull him, perhaps you get the run. But he’s only at 95 pitches and throwing daggers in the 8th. Do you leave him in to bat so he can get the extra inning?

NL games are so much more strategically interesting for it.


There are what, five pitchers that can sort of hit? The rest try their darnedest to participate in that exciting ritual known as bunti…errr, incredibly intricate NL-only strategy.

And I see Craig is already talking about that late game strategy, which is offset by pulling a pitcher having an awesome start in the 5th or 6th because they needed to bring in that pinch hitter to pop up for him.

Almost forgot about the strategy of walking the #8 hitter so often because an incompetent hitter is coming up :D That’s fun to sit through.


They really are. Not always, obviously, but it’s an extra dimension that’s more interesting.

I had a ridiculous idea that would be the absolute best and get those damn millenials to pay attention to baseball again:

Once per game, a manager can declare TURBO MODE. TURBO MODE suspends the usual rules around batting order for the next 9 hitters or until the inning ends: Whoever the hell you want gets to hit, minus anyone currently a) on base b) on deck or c) in the hole. Just put the heart of the order up over and over until either you bat around or the inning ends.

Think about it! Think about how jacked the stadium will get when you put two guys on with no outs in the second inning against a tough lefty and the home manager fires off a team-colors flare (yeah he gets a fuckin’ flare gun) from the dugout, and here comes Ramirez/Lindor/Santana instead of the backup second baseman, the guy who only has a roster spot because he can catch your starter’s offspeed nonsense, and the pitcher himself.

Think about the heavy metal riffs blasting over the PA. Think of the PA announcer’s triumphant TURBO MOOOOOOOOOOODE call. Think about the stupid fucking CG robot Fox will throw onscreen to obscure anything interesting that might actually happen in the game.

Someone get me a hotline to the Overlord of the KBO and the Lord Commander of NPB, stat.


Excuse me, Michael Martinez has a name.

[cries in 10th inning]


While I do think $330m contracts are insane, they are the outlier. Sport is built around each team having a couple guys making really insane money, a few guys making really decent money and then a bunch of guys doing well but nothing outrageous based on the salary average.

And the fact is since the last player agreement and TV contract the teams are doing really well. People may talk about how poor MLB’s ratings and demographics are but the fact is teams are doing very well right now.


Players used to make in the 60+% range of official revenue.

Recently it has been declining

Also remember that teams hide all kinds of revenue behind sweetheart deals to parking/tv/ticket companies which benefit the owners but don’t count as league revenue.

It will decline more once this offseason finishes up. Total league payroll was down last year and will probably be down this year again.

I am not saying that anyone needs to feel bad for the Harpers of the world (obviously) but the huge ticket/food price increases are disproportionately going into the owner’s pockets.


Right, players are doing well and owners are doing well. But a lot of people can’t afford to take their families to the ballpark and the game will eventually suffer for that. I’ve never understood why an industry that can pay these insane salaries can’t make it affordable to come to the games.


And the players association most likely says “Hey, we deserve a bigger cut” instead of “Hey, you’re going to kill the game - how about cutting fans some slack?” I mean I get that it’s a business and that greed is going to win out every time but it’s still frustrating to see.


I am no expert but who actually controls the concessations in most major league ballparks? Is it the teams or the cities that own the stadiums on some kind of contract basis? I believe in most cases it is the teams but I am not sure. In some cities (Oakland and Minnesota according to above post) the ballparks offer some very good family value. In others, maybe where tickets are fought over a little more, that value is questionable.

As I understand it baseball food and drink is cheap compared to NFL food and drink prices.


Lots of teams literally no longer want middle class families to go to their games. They just want wealthy people who don’t care how much stuff costs at the stadium:


You got your Disneyland in my peanut butter! Way too many similarities between this and the annual pass prices in CA and FL.


“And quite frankly,” he said, “the fan may be someone who has never sat in a premium location. So that’s a frustration to our existing fan base.”


Attendance is such a small portion of team’s revenue mix, I’m not sure they even care what their attendance numbers are. Attendance has been dropping year-over-year for like 8 seasons now, and revenues are up every season.


All the more troubling that the prices aren’t dirt cheap. Why bother gouging fans if the numbers don’t really matter?


I’m not saying it’s smart. Short-term it may be no problem for the league. What turns kids into lifelong diehard fans is the in-stadium experience at an impressionable age. Worked for me, and pretty much every sports fan I know. It’s a lot harder to do through a phone screen.


Yep, I have fond memories of going to Arlington Stadium back in the day, shitty as it was, metal bleachers and everything. And then later going to the Ballpark in Arlington, though now it’s being replaced by some unnecessary monstrosity.

Would like to take my girls to see the Rangers visit Anaheim one of these days but it just doesn’t seem worth the expense. Not even going to think about Dodger Stadium and the headaches that would involve.


I think that a big part of the disconnect is that most of the owners don’t really care about the long term health of the game. They are very successfully cashing absolutely staggering amounts of money out of the league and they are happy to let it ride. And if they somehow manage to kill off baseball it’ll happen after they are dead or sold the team anyways.


Baseball needs it’s own Adam Silver.


Maybe its own Adam Conover too!

“Here’s why RBIs are useless…”
“Are there really clutch hitters?”
“Why doesn’t baseball want poor minority kids sitting in the good sections?”


Looks pretty flat, mostly. Dip last year partially (but not completely) related to historical amount of games postponed by rain/weather in the spring.