The Baltimore Orioles have gotten themselves caught up in various situations regarding unwritten rules over time. Every team has. But if you believe some people, those unwritten codes are part of what’s ruining baseball.
And that’s an issue with which I take issue. Let me preface this by saying that this column isn’t about unwritten codes. It’s about a wide array of things that tie into one main idea. Many people say that those unwritten codes are dragging the game downwards because the younger audience doesn’t care for them. Translated to me, that means they simply don’t understand them.
We also hear about how the games are too long, some rules too cumbersome, and about the sexiness of the game not being high enough. All with regard to a younger audience. We’re then reminded that of all the major sports, baseball fans’ average ages are creeping up. Which goes back to the point about the younger audiences – basically if the sport doesn’t modernize itself, it’ll die.
And I find that hard to believe. It’s always found a way to motor it’s way through tough times. Quite frankly it needs to start at the bottom; parents need to get their kids involved in baseball. Whether that means little league, going to big league (or minor league) games, or something else, just get them involved.
One of the more radicle ideas I’ve heard is that the game should be limited to seven innings. Uh…no. I’m sorry that the younger audience doesn’t see the value in the game the way it is, but baseball’s always been a nine inning sport. Just like four periods (quarters) in football, and three periods in hockey.
Whether we’re talking unwritten rules or length of games, the fabric of the game should always remain the same. I’m sorry, but that’s just a fact. You can disagree with me all you want – any many of you do, on twitter (when these issues come up). But changing the very fabric of the game, or re-writing it’s history, makes no sense. In fact, it’s borderline disrespectful to the die hard lifers out there. If you want to play seven inning games where guys can “pimp” their home runs as much as they’d like, you can call it anything you’d like. But it’s not baseball.