Why alter the pitch clock for the postseason since it is functioning as of now in September?
The pitch clock will remain in place for the playoffs, the league has decided, the baseball world learnt on Friday. In other words, if the bases are empty when the clock starts, the pitcher has 15 seconds to throw a pitch; if there are runners on, the pitcher has 20 seconds. Before there are eight seconds left on the clock, the batter must be prepared.
Congratulations, Major League Baseball.
MLB is having a successful season. The number of spectators per game is at its highest level since 2017. If 2020 and 2021 are excluded because to pandemic restrictions, the increase in attendance over the previous year — 9.18% until August — is on track to be the greatest since 1998, when there were two expansion clubs. 23 of the 30 teams have witnessed rises in 2023 compared to 2022 in terms of average attendance at games. Ratings for television are also rising.
Is the pitch clock entirely to blame for this? I don’t think that’s the only cause, but it would be foolish to deny that it’s had a big impact. In recent years, attendance and ratings have declined as play has become slower and slower. When there was no pitch clock, why are those same numbers rising again? There is substance to it.
The World Series games, which are the most significant of the year, have concluded far too late, far too often, according to fans who have “normal” jobs, despite the fact that the playoffs have been tremendously exciting in recent years.
There is a balancing act with the time zones in the continental United States alone, to start. The proponents of “just starting the games earlier” are downplaying the impact a start time change to roughly 7 p.m. ET would have on west coast supporters. On an east coast work/school night, it was more likely that the games would end after midnight the later we got after 8 p.m. ET.
Basically, at least for weekday games, the league is obligated to use around 8 p.m. ET.
the pitch clock now.
Through the month of August this season, a game lasted an average of two hours and 41 minutes. One of the funny criticisms about the pitch clock I’ve heard this season is that players are “rushing.” Does anyone who routinely watched baseball in August genuinely think the players appear hurried? They don’t seem to be rushing, at least not in comparison to the slogging of recent years. I’d take the other tack and suggest that we just eliminate the pointless standing around that some could refer to as “dilly-dallying.” The players do not, in my opinion at least, appear “rushed.” They simply appear to be baseball players moving reasonably quickly.
Older baseball viewers should be aware of the game’s tempo as well. Between 2:40 and 2:44 was the typical game time between 1982 and 1985. Then, were the players hurried? How about back in the 1950s, when a game would last, on average, two and a half hours? All the while, were they all “rushed”?
C’mon. We all understand better. The players just lost control in the last two decades by taking far too long to both enter the box and throw the ball. The pitch clock rule was used to reduce it, and it has been extremely effective.
In the playoffs, that time of game will increase to about three hours. Data from previous seasons has shown us this (the average game last season lasted 15 minutes longer than it did during the regular season). The rise might not be as significant, but the ad breaks are longer. I understand that some people would prefer not to do that, but good luck tampering with the all-powerful dollar. Additionally, I like more action and break time while we’re watching actual baseball to less actual break time and a lot of hanging around on the pitch when it’s baseball time.
As we approach the playoffs, we should have two objectives:
1. Enable as many current supporters as you reasonably can to attend as many playoff games as you can.
2. Draw in more admirers.
On both counts, the pitch clock will be a significant improvement over previous seasons. No. 1 has previously been discussed.
Regarding option number 2, countless casual sports fans will attend a baseball playoff game to take a quick look. Exciting them is the finest method to win them over as devoted followers. A excellent method to achieve it is by more brisk on-field activity as opposed to idleness. The best way to drive them away is to have the most crucial games of the season end hours after bedtime — and once more, this argument has to include children who are in school.
Instead, in about a month, baseball will be ready to showcase its much faster-paced product to the world of casual sports fans. It’s a fantastic chance.
The majority of the World Series games this year should fit well within a timeframe between 8 p.m. ET to approximately 11:15 p.m. ET. That translates to 10:15 for the Central time zone, 9:15 for Mountain time, and 8:15 for Western time. That’s incredibly reasonable and will let you take advantage of this opportunity in a big way.
Bravo, Major League Baseball, once more.