Baltimore Orioles: Playoff games are in fact longer

The Baltimore Orioles have been in the post season of late enough for fans to know that post season games are longer. And that’s literally a fact, not so much because of how the games unfold, but because of the between-innings clock. During the regular season teams have two minutes and thirty seconds between innings. In the post season it lengthens to just under three minutes.

But that’s not uncommon. Commercial breaks are longer for Sunday or Monday night football than they are for a regular Sunday, 1 PM NFL game telecast. The same is true with Sunday Night Baseball. It’s more of a national television thing than anything else.

Having said that, the fact is that post season games unfold differently than do regular season games. If a starter doesn’t have it early, he’s probably pulled in the second or perhaps even the first inning. We don’t see this same sense of urgency in the regular season, nor should we (for the most part). Dropping one game isn’t going to do you in. It could in the playoffs.

And the other ironic part is that we don’t see too many people complaining about the length of games in the playoffs. Post season baseball is one of the most compelling things in sports. And that’s mainly because of the fact that the games do unfold with much more of a sense of urgency.

The NFL playoffs have that same sense of urgency because its one and done. However in general games aren’t played differently than they are in the regular season. Maybe the end of games might vary slightly if it’s close, but for the most part football is football.

Again, nobody really complains about the length of the games in the MLB playoffs. One thing that does get covered ad hoc is the start times of the games. Two NLDS games this week are beginning at 9 PM eastern time. I’m the first one to tell you that’s way too late.

How can MLB expect kids to stay up and watch those games if they’re starting so late? And if the games are lasting four hours in general, how can they expect anyone to stay up and watch them? Find another way; start the games earlier – for the kids’ sake!

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