It’s NEVER long enough

This man gets it! (Photo courtesy of Kelly O'Connor and used with permission)

So apparently I’ve taken on a new rant, complaining about people who complain about how long Major League Baseball games take to play.  I really don’t get it.

I’ve mentioned it here, and on Facebook and on Twitter and, on the whole, most fans agree with me that, for the most part, there’s no such thing as a baseball game that goes on for too long. (I say “for the most part” because I know there are definitely times when, as fans, we want or need the game to end.  Especially fans who are at the games that go long and are concerned about public transportation home or fans who have been sitting in the rain or bitter cold for nine long innings.) It seems that the people who complain the most about the games going too long are those who get paid to cover them (or, in the case of Mark Teixeira and I’m sure other players, those who get paid to play in them).  So I was happy to be pointed to this article (thanks, Beth!) about John Farrell and his opinion of long baseball games.

For Farrell, a long game can mean two things: batters are working deep counts to their advantage and/or pitchers are controlling the pace to their advantage – meaning they pitch when they are good and ready.

How do people (read: writers and Mark Teixeira) not get this?

My only criticism of the piece is that addition of this line:

When Boston’s Jonathan Papelbon took 24 minutes to deliver 27 pitches in the 10th inning in Monday’s game, Farrell – unlike many fans – did not bat an eyelash or squirm in his seat..

It isn’t “many fans” who have been complaining about the length of games and I’m getting tired of media projecting that on to us.  Many fans want the games to last as long as they need to.  Many fans would rather watch more baseball than less.  Many fans understand that long games are long mostly because there is good baseball being played.

The Yankees and Orioles played a game last night that, instead of beginning at 7pm, started at 11pm.  There were still fans in the stands (not many, true, but there still were some there) and there were definitely fans online following the game.  Generally speaking, regardless of the conditions, fans want to watch baseball.  I wish the media (and Mark Teixeira) would stop telling us that we’re wrong for enjoying the game.

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