Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Bob Lobel: Replay Isn't Solving All of Baseball's Problems

By Bob Lobel  @boblobel

Despite the weather issues, daylight saving time offers real hope that better days are ahead.   

What I cannot understand, for the life of me, is the logic that Major League Baseball exhibits when putting its schedule together. By my count, they have scheduled 15 games at Fenway in April after last year's 19. They may be unaware, but global warming has not penetrated the outdoor arenas just yet.

Fenway Park in April is still cold. Fenway Park in other months is not. 

Is there not any other way to do a schedule, where warm climate teams host early season games and cold city climates get much of the rest of the summer? If we can do a replay system in baseball, is it not possible that someone would put together some software to make most franchises happy when it comes to weather and scheduling? Apparently not.

As a gesture of leaving office Bud, why not give us all this gift of rational behavior. By the way, the new poster boy of performance enhancing drugs, Ryan Braun, will be there for Red Sox opening day.  Not only does the schedule give us a guaranteed cold day, MLB has given us a National League team as the opponent. 

Does replay make up for the scheduling? Does it make up for the different rules in each league?  Does it make the All Star winning league getting that stupid World Series home field advantage rule? Does it address the Hall of Fame issues that will reach a peak for PED using players in the next few years? 

Is Clemens in or not? Why don't the Red Sox retire Clemens' number? Pedro's number? Dwight Evan's number. 

Of course, Pedro will get loads of honors very soon. Cooperstown, and his number retired at Fenway.  I would hope for the same for Clemens and Evans. The only issue with Evans is that Manny wore 24 after Dwight, but that's a hurdle that isn't even worth debating. Put it up. 

It's ok to think ahead to what celebratory events will be presented at the park this summer. So much will be the Marathon "Boston Strong" one year after. It is now so deeply woven into the fabric of our lives, that it has come to define us in so many more ways than Super Bowls, NBA titles, Stanley Cups, or World Series titles.

And with that thought, I will try to make an observation that our teams are blessed with general managers who really understand where their teams fit into the city they call home. The general managers around here are top shelf and are street smart, a necessity in this burg. 

The only observation to make, and they will all vehemently deny it, is that the desperation to win is not there. Not even with the Patriots, though their last title was nine years ago, the longest championship drought in town. 

Desperation to win simply makes you go the extra mile for the ultimate prize, and gives you a better edge. Once you have a recent title, there is far less pressure to push the panic button. It's human nature to play with house money.

Meanwhile, bundle up, because baseball season is right around the corner.

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