“Do You Like Baseball Games at Petco Park”
A leisurely night with guys or the family at Petco Park.
In recent years, sometimes the Padres win, sometimes they lose, but usually a night out at the yard is a pretty nice experience.
Petco Park is the shining crown jewel of downtown San Diego. Give thanks to John Moores-money, Larry Lucchino’s brilliance, and the current ownership of the Fowler-Siedler regime for all the upgrades.
Which leads us to the huge off season debate about the grand old game.
Are baseball games too long, or is there something special about a night of baseball in the Gaslamp District?
I guess if you are the Yankees or Red Sox, Dodgers or Cubs, being in the ball park is special.
But if you are the Royals-Pirates-Orioles-Padres and others, where losses have piled up, maybe the games are too long.
The Commissioner’s office has pushed for 3-years to change the chemistry of the game, alarmed by falling TV ratings, and incessant delays, that games had to speeded up.
Two years ago, they were able to push thru some ideas that umpires needed to better police the pace of the game.
They got games down to (2:56) in 20l16, but then in (2017), the games spilled over the 3-hour mark, up to (3:05). And in postseason, they went an alarmingly long (3:26).
In season is not thing, but post season carries so much more importance, you understand delays.
Game situations, pitching matchup, defensive alignments pitching changes, pinch-hitters, even instant replays, all pile up leading to lengthier games.
A lot is up on the umpires shoulders now, with what Rob Manfred and Tony Clark announced on Monday.
They had rules in place that were never followed, and I put that on MLB and the Umpires Association, for they didn’t police it properly.
MLB now says there will be only a (2:05) break between innings. The batter must be in the box at the (2:05) mark ready to get the first pitch, That pitcher must be on the rubber ready to deliver the pitch.
MLB will limit visits to the mound to just 6-per game, excluding pitching changes, this coming season. That includes manager, pitching coaches, catcher or position players.
In honor of the Mike Hargrove ‘Human Rain Delay’ era, where he had to step out of the box and adjust his batting gloves between each pitch, before he popped out, and in honor of Yankees catcher Gary Sanchez, who went to the mound 12-times in a playoff game, this sounds all well and good.
There will be no (:20) pitch clock, though I think that should be in place, for it has worked in the minors, but that could be a year down the road.
Where MLB has missed the mark is enforcement. Batter in the box, cannot remove himself from the box to adjust his gloves, cannot step out to look for a sign. Pitchers should not be allowed to step off the rubber once they are on the hill.
I counted one Carlos Quentin at bat, where he stepped out 7-times to adjust his glove.
I counted a Rockies reliever, Rafael Betancourt, taking an average (32) seconds between each pitche to Padres hitter, just because three was a man on first base.
You cannot put rules in that impact strategy of the game, penalizing a team a ball or a strike. But there are ways to signal shifts in defense from the dugout. You can signal hit and run plays and pickup plays without multiple upon multiples stoppage in play.
The NFL has the play clock. The NBA has the shot clock. College basketball has its 10-second rule.
There are ways to quicken up the game, without changing the game.
Unless you feel there is nothing wrong with a 3-plus-hour game, drinking beer, eating hot dogs.
Give me that pitch clock…the Batters Box rule…add in the limited visits to the mound, and let’s get on with it….and the between innings breaks.
But it all involves one key component. Not the man in the dugout, Andy Green, or the guy on the mound Luis Perdomo, or the guy in the box Eric Hosmer.
It’s on the umpires to enforce the rules. It’s up to the players to follow the rules.