Spring training began this week. Well, last week, if you count pitchers and catchers.
Forgive me if I don’t share the reverence that some apparently feel for the phrase “Pitchers and catchers report…”
This morning, it was 20 degrees in St. Louis. Early April is six weeks away, but there’s a reasonably good chance that we’ll still have winter-coat weather on opening day. I have personally been to an April game in St. Louis that got canceled because of snow.
I love baseball as much as the next guy. I really do. But baseball’s a summer game: shirtsleeves, a baseball cap, and a big cup of beer. Not a parka, mittens and hot chocolate.
The World Series just ended a little over three months ago; do we really need to crank it up again this soon? Why must the regular season of baseball be stretched over six months — with a month added onto the end for the post-season, and another month and a half on the beginning for spring training? Does it really take six months to whittle 32 teams down to the eight that will make the playoffs?
My modest proposal: scrap the notion that we have to have a 162-game regular season. Make it 100 games, 120 even. Start spring training on April 1, and the regular season on May 1. Play through the summer, and then start the playoffs on Labor Day. You can get the postseason done by early October, and not have the embarrassment of having World Series games played in sub-freezing temperatures, long after most of the country has moved on to football.