Thursday, November 13, 2008

Let the starter close.

This is a variation on my theme of getting an optimal number of pitches from the best pitchers available for each game. This latest may be the easiest for conventional managers to implement. The pitchers we currently describe as starters would continue to pitch in a regular rotation as they do now. The difference would be that they enter the game in the fourth inning and finish it. They would be long men and closers all wrapped into one. That means that they only need to pitch six innings. Most can do that most of the time. If not, bring in the worst relief pitchers to finish and take your chances. So who pitches the first three innings? The same guys who now pitch the last three innings, except in reverse order. The closer starts because he is the team's best short pitcher. The advantages as mentioned in previous posts:

1. He pitches to the top of the batting order.
2. He may pitch more than one inning, depending on pitch count.
3. Tha game is close.

Next into the game is the second best relief pitcher and so on until the three innings are complete. Then the long man enters to finish the game. An additional advantage is that the opposing manager has a dilemma: does he set his lineup for the expected long man or for the short starter?

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Neutral site for WS.

Some non-radical people have suggested that the World Series be played at a neutral site in a dome on seven consecutive days. This because of the weather mess of the 2008 WS. The neutral site would not be needed if they implemented my recent suggestion: do not play on a wet field or when the temperature is below fifty degrees. Failing that the neutral site is not as nutty as it may seem at first, nor such a long shot. 1. We could have a special field on which the outfield fences are the same distance from home plate in all directions and the same height. This was in my very first post. 2. MLB would have an excuse to add more games because the final round, the World Series, would be weather-proof. The additional games could take these forms: A. First playoff round extended from five to seven games. B. Add a playoff round. C. Lengthen the regular season. D. Extend the WS from seven to nine games; four WS were best of nine: 1907, 1919, 1920, 1921; MLB could claim that it was returning to its roots. All four of these forms of additional games could be implemented, either one at a time or all at once. Playing the WS on seven consecutive days would be more like the regular season when there are few off days much less two in nine days.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Put lids on ball parks. "There was no roof on the Colosseum, but in the summer great canvas sheets were rigged to the top to form awnings that kept the sun off everyone inside." If the ancient Romans could do it we can do it. Cover the ball parks. My recent post about not playing in wet cold conditions resulted in this post, which addresses half of the equation. I am guessing that it would be relatively easy to develop retractable soft covers, probably made of something more high tech than canvas. Anything would be preferable to the travesty of 2008 World Series game five, which took three days to finish and which was tied in the sixth inning during a driving rain storm. MLB has no shame.