Shortly after Robert Murray of MLBDailyRumors.com reporting that pitch clocks will be added to all Double- and Triple-A stadiums prior to Opening Day, it became the hot topic of the baseball Internet. People have many varying opinions on the topic. However, pitch clocks are not good for the game of baseball, no matter what people say otherwise.
Baseball is a marathon, not a race. There is no clock in baseball and should never be no clock in baseball. While this is a way to shorten the games, the effects of the pitch clock could ruin the great part about baseball. First, play-by-play announcers won't be able to share as many stories or thoughts about the game at hand when the pitcher only has 20 seconds to throw his next pitch. Second, the game will not have the same intensity feel to it. In the ninth, the closer comes in and stares down the hitter for five or six seconds, with the fans screaming and yelling. There is nothing in sports like that.
While the pitch clock has not been instituted into the big league level quite yet, the fact that it was added to the minors could just be a stepping stone to an eventual pitch clock in the Major Leagues. According to Sports Illustrated, while the pitch clock was being tested in the Arizona Fall League, one game took only two hours and fourteen minutes. An average MLB game took three hours and eight minutes to complete this last year.
I do not know if the pitch clock, or other pace of play rules, will help the shortening attention span of the future generations. I'm not going to lie; baseball is a slow-moving sport. However, will the pitch clock or any other pace of play rules really engage more of the younger generation? Will these rules really convince them to choose to watch baseball? I don't know. I would not think so.
I'm not a hardcore baseball traditionalist. That is, I use and love Sabermetrics, am happy about expanded replay, and would vote for the "alleged" PED users into the Hall of Fame (and Pete Rose). However, the pitch clock is crossing the line. Some things in baseball just cannot be changed, or else it would not be baseball anymore. The pitch clock is a prime example of breaking the unwritten rule, "There is no clock in baseball."
As the pitch clock makes its way into the ever-changing sport of baseball, I am not a fan. It's good that it is unlikely to be implemented into the bigs this season, but if all goes "well" in the minors, could we be seeing it used in MLB Spring Training games and eventually MLB regular season games? I think so. That is not good for baseball and would be changing the sport from the way it has been for over 100 years.
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