By In Baseball

No runs, no hits, no action

6 Responses to No runs, no hits, no action

  1. Confused in Boston says:


    In case you hadn’t noticed, your old friend Yuniesky was putting up the following slash line for the Orix Buffaloes in 74 PAs: .141/.139/.155 (10-71, 1 2B, 0 BBs)

  2. KHAZAD says:

    I really agree with this. In the end, it always comes down to the league and the umpires. The rules to make it faster are already on the books, they just need to be enforced.

    The steroid era had that offensive explosion that is entirely attributed to the PEDs, but I always thought the postage stamp strike zone had just as much, or even more effect on the run scoring. There were no steroids in the 1930s, (another high offensive era) but I wonder if the strike zone got smaller then as well.

    When I started watching and playing baseball in the 1970s, the batter had to keep one foot in the box, and if you asked for time, you better have a darned good reason. Now after every pitch, the batter takes a little walkabout, re tightens his batting gloves (really? my batting gloves aren’t even that expensive, and I don’t have to adjust them after every swing. Of course, they do it even when they don’t swing) stares off into space, adjusts his helmet, pulls on his clothes a little, then gets back in the box and spends a few seconds digging in and getting his position just right. They used to call Mike Hargrove “the human rain delay”, but Mike was probably faster than the average hitter today. I have seen several instances this year when the Umpire granted time while the pitcher had already started his motion, for no apparent reason. I don’t think I have seen an umpire ignore or turn down a request in 20 years. (It used to happen quite a bit)

    There are really slow pitchers as well (when Joel Peralta was with the Royals, it used to drive me crazy when he was on the mound, and he is somehow 7 seconds slower now) but I think the biggest problem is right there in the batters box. The next time you watch a game, pull out a stopwatch and see how many seconds it takes just for the batter to get set. The catchers don’t start flashing the signs until that happens. I think the vast majority of pitchers (there are a few exceptions) deliver (or throw to a base if there is a runner on) within 12 seconds after the batter finally gets his ass back in the box and declares himself “ready”.

    When the league and the umpires crack down on this, the games will be faster. Oh, there is still a little delay for modern times (The vast majority of games are televised now, and there has to be time for commercials between innings. If you see a football game live, the biggest delays are because of TV) but there will be quicker games. It is also something the league SHOULD focus on. There are no commercials between pitches or batters, so they don’t make any more money, though I guess longer games mean more concessions on site. Umpires get paid by the game, not the hour, and they should want to get through it in a reasonable amount of time.

    It’s all a pretty simple fix, it’s just a matter of getting it done.

    • Brett Alan says:

      I agree with you, although I do want to point out that they DO sell little ads between pitches. This is the fifteenth comment I’ve written since the start of the month, and GEICO want to remind you that fifteen minutes could save you fifteen percent on car insurance. That sort of thing.

      Still…they can get those things in without all these delays, can’t they? Is there any disadvantage to baseball to enforce these rules, other than the bitching and moaning that will come when they do and the players take a little time to adjust to it? I don’t get it.

  3. Frog says:

    Have any of the smarties created a “watchability” scoring system? I seem to remember that Bill James did something to calculate scoring pitching quality in a game. I’d liove to know which teams are the most watchable.

  4. Mark Daniel says:

    Are you saying that the game is too slow when you help your kids get ready for bed, read them a bedtime story, tuck them in and kiss them goodnight, and when you get back to the living room the same batter is still up?

  5. Why not just have a “pitch clock” like basketball? Put a 12-second clock up. If the buzzer goes off, it’s a ball. The batter needs to get his butt in the batter’s box, or he’ll have trouble swinging at a strike while he’s adjusting his batting gloves (despite not swinging at the previous pitch).

    Have a limited number of time outs (like every other sport). 1 timeout per inning, plus 3 bonus timeouts that can be used any time during the game.

    I think people in the NBA hated the idea of a shot clock when it was first implemented, but it was probably the most important idea that eventually led to the NBA’s popularity.

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