We all have ideas as far as what we would change to make sports better. I’m going to cover each of the major 4 sports over the next few days and throw my proverbial hat into the ring. You can agree, you can disagree; and that’s fine. Neither of us is on the committee to change them anyway, but it’s interesting to get takes from other sports fans as far as rules that they feel need changed. So let’s start with baseball.
The first thing I would change in Major League Baseball would be to get rid of the Designated Hitter. I know this is a hotly contested issue. Younger fans tend to lean towards keeping it while the older fans want to get rid of it. Baseball is meant for 9 people to play the game, not 10. Even as a 9 year old, in 1973, I thought this new rule was ridiculous. My thought was that if they couldn’t play the field, then get out of baseball. I didn’t like the the fact that MLB was tampering with the purity of the game. I still stand by this belief, Ron Blomberg be damned.
We need to take the All-Star Game vote out of the hands of the fans. This popularity contest has made the Grammys look like a swell choice on a Monday night. I’ve seen players having horrible seasons starting ahead of players that deserve it much more. I believe several years ago that Jimmy Rollins started the ASG sporting a .217 average, or somewhere thereabouts. I’m not here to bash Rollins; he had a stellar career. Just making a point to one incident that stands out to me. Let the players and coaches vote on this. They are the ones that compete against them and obviously have a much better feel for the game than we do.
Let catchers block home plate again. This was one of the most sissified rules I had ever seen implemented. Just because MLB darling Buster Posey got hurt doesn’t mean that the rest of the league, and their fans, should have to suffer. I grew up watching Johnny Bench, Thurman Munson, Carlton Fisk, and several other great catchers play the game as it should be played. Their job is to keep the other team from scoring in the event of a play at the plate. Today’s soft world wants them to roll out a red carpet. Nope, not in my world.
Encourage on-field celebrations. Yeah, I’m talking about bat flips. I’m also talking about pitchers celebrating a key strikeout. Remember Brad Leslie? Nicknamed ‘The Animal’, he was very demonstrative and animated on the mound. How did fans take it? He was a fan favorite, and for good reason. Flip the bat, pump your fist, let out a primal roar if need be. Just make sure you’re showing passion on the field. This is what the fans want; it’s what they deserve. For the players that talk about unwritten rules, how about you write them down, cupcake? See if you realize how ridiculous they are. Can I cc: Chris Archer on this?
And finally, in closing…………..Pete Rose belongs in the Baseball Hall of Fame. Period. I won’t listen to any argument that says he doesn’t. One of the greatest hitters ever, all-time hit king, and he hustled more than anyone ever has; before, since, and going forward. The man deserves to be inducted. He broke the rules as a manager, not a player. Put the player in where he belongs. Besides, he bet on his team to win, he didn’t fix games. That would be like me betting that we’ll meet all client SLAs this week. I’d be betting that I was doing my job.
So what would you change? What do you think would make the game we love a little better? I would love to hear other ideas from fans of the game. There is no right or wrong here, just opinions. The game is changing as the years pass by. I hope it doesn’t eventually morph into an unrecognizable form of the game I grew up playing and watching.