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The Trouble With Baseball This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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   The Trouble with Baseball

by J. G., Spencer, MA

Major league baseball may no longer be the number one sport in America. Basketball and football are getting more popular. There are many reasons why baseball is becoming less popular.

First of all the games are much too long. Most games are more than three hours long and there is no half time (like basketball and football). The pitchers get the ball, walk around, fix their hat, glove, and the mound, then they shake off about four signs from the catcher before they pick a pitch. The batters adjust their helmet, and gloves. They'll walk around between pitches, and look at the third base coach for a minute. Then either the batter or the pitcher will call time-out because they've waited too long, which makes no sense. The umpires' strike zone seems to be shrinking so that every at-bat goes to a full count. When the pitchers come in from the bullpen, the umpires give them five minutes to warm up, which is stupid because the pitcher has already been warming up.

Almost all of the playoffs and World Series games are played at night. The games start at about 8: 15 and go for at least three hours. This year the World Series games went four hours long, which is after midnight. They complain about ratings, but who is going to watch baseball at that hour on a school night? Start the games at 7: 00 and have more afternoon games. Who cares about television ratings? It's baseball, not a TV series. It can't be cancelled.

Another reason the league isn't as popular is because there is little marketing of the teams and the players. The NBA is the best at that. They have their superstars on commercials, on clothes, on food, on videos - everywhere. Baseball hasn't done any of that. People see all of that and it makes them watch basketball and want to play basketball.

The baseball season is also too long. Football is a big deal every Sunday; it's the weekly games that make football so popular. Basketball has an 82-game season; baseball has 162 games, more than double. A lot of people get tired of baseball after a while.

Baseball will change the divisions around next year. There will be three divisions in each league and there will be three division champions and a wild card team. It will be similar to the NFL. Major league baseball hopes this will help baseball make a comeback. Until they shorten the games and the season, I don't think more playoff games is the answer. But baseball will always be around, it's still the national pastime of America.


This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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