Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Thoughts about Interleague Play

Hi kids. Yes, I missed the boat by a week and a half, but it was hard to get thoughts together because there are so many pros and cons to this concept.

Soooo....interleague play--the 3 weeks out of the year where you see AL pitchers bat for themselves and see massive in-city rivalries unfold. Is it good? Yes and no. I'll give my opinions on why.

Why it's good:
--You prepare certain teams/players for the All-Star game in July and possibly the World Series in October. A lot of people complain about how they haven't seen certain people ever pitch or not able to get used to playing in particular stadiums. You get it in interleague play.
--You widen your fanbase by getting kids (and adults) to see you in person and watch you kick serious butt. Getting traded doesn't count here, because you need to be like a flash in the night and not a prostitute to teams, per se. Hey, it gets the stadiums some more revenue, am I right?
--It shows your versatility. I'm not going to lie, the AL and NL are different worlds, and only playing certain teams kinda makes you susceptible to show alienation or signs of a funk once you go up against a team you've never seen or haven't played in six seasons.
--I sort of mentioned this already, but it's also great for stadium revenue. Shoot, I highly doubt people ever go to Camden Yards to watch a game anymore, but interleague definitely helps especially when you have teams like the Mets, Phillies, and Braves come around with faithful fans and have them watch you get schooled.
--It's interesting to watch the NL teams get the DH role. See, I've never agreed with the idea of the designated hitter. I'll explain why: if a pitcher is in the majors, he should show more versatility and use his pitching mechanics to decipher an opposing pitchers' moves and style, therefore, being a smart and mindful batter (cough cough Cliff Lee cough cough). I hate to see the idea of these really old (and fat, mind you) guys that should have retired years ago still playing because they can hit home runs. I say home runs because let's be honest, can old fat guys run well? The first guy that comes to mind is Frank Thomas. He finally retired last year, and that was probably the best decision ever. Of course, you get skinny guys like Matsui or Morneau in there, but I'm just trying to make a point--the American League is way too offensive for my liking whilst the National League is a bit more strategical since you have to ultimately have to work things around the skill of your pitcher more than usual.

Why it's bad:
--First things first, American League pitchers HATE to bat. We National League fans laugh at them for it.
--National League players hate the fact that they don't have the DH and that it takes a toll on their own morale. A main offender of complaining as far as my recent memory goes is Chipper Jones. He's whined about it for quite some time, and a lot of other players can agree with them--because yeah, he's sorta right on how the AL is more offensively-oriented and it can make a difference in play, but shouldn't you be prepared for that with your smarter pitching and bulkier bullpens? Just sayin', Larry.
--It may actually mess your offense up due to heavy adjusting against different pitching. There have been a lot of issues with that lately. The Phillies went into a massive funk after going against knuckleballer Tim Wakefield in mid-May. Could you imagine how much more demeaning it would be if it was that Japanese chick owning them instead?
--It proves nothing on how tops you are in your own respective division/league. Awesome, you did well against the opposing league, but how are you doing in your own division/league? Sucky? Oh, well that's too bad.

Well, that's my view on things about Interleague Play. It has it's kinks, but it also has it's massive downsides. What do you think about it? Comment, please!!


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