Friday, June 10, 2022

Two Random Sports Thoughts

Hello, friends!

I put these two topics on the list for the show, but this takes less time so here we are. This way you can scroll through my ramblings instead - let's go!

Every baseball stadium needs a retractable roof

I have actually thought about this for many years, and I may have even addressed this super important issue on my live show many years ago. Even if you remember back that far, bear with me on this one.

Baseball season starts in April. This is a time when it rains a ton in the Northeast. It also snows in the Midwest. I realize that there are other regions of the country, but I live in the Northeast and the scenes of snow at Wrigley and Coors Fields are memorable. The point is: the weather sucks in April, leading to a lot of rescheduling and lost off days later. It is messy every year and I'm not sure why some kind of change hasn't been made yet.

Okay, I do know why: it's a money issue (isn't everything?). I understand that owners won't suddenly approve of renovations to make this happen. The cost would be enormous and it would likely take a while for that money to be made back. And if they asked the cities to chip in for this? Forget that forever, I'd say. But long term, wouldn't this be a good move?

Teams would not have to miss so many games early in the season, meaning more fans would be able to attend. More fans means more money, and I have to think owners would at least consider this outlandish proposal on that premise alone. And, obviously, it rains all year. So the shuffling and doubleheader-ing through the end of the season and into the playoffs would be gone. Isn't that a win for everyone?

Pony up, billionaires. Let's make weather delays and postponements a thing of the past.

Why can't we get wiffleball on TV?

This is completely unrelated to the first thing, but I'm sure we'll all be fine about it.

I thought about this in 2020 when sports weren't really happening. There were a lot of events that received TV time, presumably because networks needed to fill some slots (you can only speculate on who will start games again first for so many hours, after all). We had - and still have - games like cornhole, pickleball, darts, ultimate frisbee, and poker all over the sports channels. I'm not saying that these events aren't worthy of being on TV - except poker, really - but there is a glaring omission that bothers me. 

How is wiffleball not enough of a sport, but these games are?

Maybe wiffleball leagues aren't as prevalent as I think [hope] they are. This could very well be a total niche sport. But I find it very hard to believe that fewer people play - or are interested in - wiffleball than pickleball and darts. Am I both grossly underestimating national interest in tennis-like sports and overestimating that interest in baseball because I prefer the latter? Yes, my friends. Yes I am.

When I was a kid, wiffleball was second only to basketball in the neighborhood. It doesn't require a ton of equipment and anyone can grab the bat and make some lucky contact. I did find that there is a wiffleball league that posts games and whatnot on YouTube - check out their latest video below:

Now if these people can get 337,000 subscribers on YouTube, why can't that be shown on ESPN2 or FS1? I find it hard to believe that more people than that have a vested interest in pickleball and darts. Let's get these dudes a licensing deal or whatever it's called and put wiffleball back on the map! Skateboarding was in the Olympics, so let's push that button and go to work!

(I realize that skateboarding and wiffleball, and their fan bases, are very different. But go with me here. It is still more of a sport than poker will ever be.)

And while we're at it: Can we get a wiffleball video game again? Years ago there was one on a flash games (RIP) site - made by Nabisco for some reason? - and I loved it. How hard would this be to code? Do I know any game developers? Could I do it? Doug, if you're reading this let me know how difficult this would be. Okay I think we've meandered far enough here, let's bring this home.


So Pat, what's the end game here? Well my friend, I want rainouts in MLB to disappear and I want more wiffleball-related things to materialize. These two items have nothing in common except that I thought about them both at the same time a few weeks ago and started writing these words. So write to your Senators and members of Congress and let's see how far we can take this. I believe in us!

That'll do it for me today. Come on back tomorrow for the podcast - it's my birthday! And let me know if you have any random thoughts that I should express on your behalf here and/or on the show. Until next time, have fun and don't do anything I wouldn't do!

Crap open a cold one!

(This post was brought to you by Broad Street Bound.)

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