Aaron Boone made a statement this weekend regarding the implementation of a mercy rule in baseball. My first reaction was that Aaron Boone has been hitting the bottle a little too hard. Baseball is not a timed game. Its beauty, in part, lies in the fact that you can always come back, no matter how large the deficit. The more I thought about it though, it started to make sense, but with parameters.
I don’t think, under any circumstances, that it should be mandated like it is in the Little League World Series. I feel it should be up to the discretion of the team that is getting mauled 18-1 in the 7th inning. Still, even if that were the case, I doubt we would see it that often. Look how many 10-run innings we’ve seen of late. Again, it’s the beauty of the sport; no time limits.
There may be, from time to time, a team that just wants to throw in the towel rather than bear another inning or 3, late in the season, when they are down by 12 runs. If you’re out of the playoff race, why bother? One of the things that Boone mentioned was position players pitching in blowouts. I think I speak on behalf of most Reds fans when I say that we have thoroughly enjoyed watching Jose Peraza and Kyle Farmer pitch this season. The Farmer ‘Euphus’ pitch is a sight to behold. Coming in at a blazing 46mph, yeah, good luck turning on that one. Jose Peraza has a sidearm delivery that is perfectly suited for, well, the HR Derby. Still, it has been entertaining for those of us that actually still had the game on.
Even with the stipulation that the losing team can request an early stoppage, issues could still arise. Actually, we can almost guarantee that they will. There will be that fan, that one guy that has to be ‘that guy’, who will decide to sue the team because he purchased a ticket for an entire game. Trust me, he’s out there. In this new Litigious America, everyone is ready to take someone to court. They want that easy payday for doing absolutely nothing. Let freedom ring.
Honestly, I doubt this will ever come to fruition. I do like the possibility of it though, but with the main stipulation being that the losing team can request it. And for the record, Peraza’s ERA is 0.00 in 2 appearances this season. At least, it’s 2 that I’m aware of. He may become the Reds closer once they are mathematically eliminated. No? Ok, moving on……
We’ll see where it goes; probably nowhere. Other than Aaron Boone’s comments, I haven’t seen anyone else talking about it. But what if?