A Substitute for War

Basketball philosophy

Another idea to remodel the MLB: A mid-season trophy

leave a comment »

Last month I posted this change to the MLB schedule, operating under the framework that a 162 G schedule hurts the stakes of games too much.

Now I have an idea I like even more!

There’s a reason one can’t just cut the 162 G schedule in half. Financially it’s worth it to teams to dilute the product for twice the games and it’d wreck statistical records like home runs or wins for pitchers.

If cutting the season in half isn’t an option, what about two seasons half as long? Say the first three months, they play an 80 game-ish long “season”. There is no playoffs at the end, instead it’s old school rules – First place teams in the AL and NL play each other. Instead of the World Series, they’re playing for another trophy – let’s call it the Jackie Robinson trophy for now. The series would have to be short because other teams’ pitchers can’t be sitting for too long. A 5 G series, a 3 G series or even a 1 G winner takes all, would work.

After the Jackie Robinson trophy game, the slate is wiped clean and everyone starts back at 0 W-0 L. They then play another 80 or so games, before their records are seeded into the divisional and wild card October playoff format we know now, leading to a World Series winner.

The plan would be for the Jackie Robinson trophy to be the Golden Globes to the World Series’ Oscars, or the Eurocup to its World Cup – the 2nd most important trophy, but still a big deal to win and still cool.

The benefits of this plan:

– First, it achieves the objective of putting 1/80th of the season level stakes into games, instead of 1/162. The second half of the season in particular as the teams race to October playoff seedings, would be exciting.

– It gives a reprieve to teams in the second half of the season. In the current system, more than half the league are out of the playoff picture and playing meaningless games in the second half. This system gives them another shot. Teams who disappointed out of the gates like the Blue Jays and Royals this season, would get another kick at the can.

– At the same time, it adds a level of meritocracy. A criticism can be made of the MLB playoffs, that the World Series team doesn’t have to be the best team, they can just be the most hot. With the regular season AL and NL leaders playing for the Jackie Robinson trophy, there’s a reward for a team playing the best in the regular season. A truly great team also has the opportunity to prove it by winning both the Jackie Robinson trophy and the World Series in the same season.

– Financially, the series for the Jackie Robinson trophy is ratings winner and a gates winner for the teams involved. It also makes games with the AL and NL pennants on the line leading up to it, more important and talking heads worthy. It’s a fun and fan-friendly idea.

I would love this change for the MLB! It seems overwhelmingly a positive change.

Advertisements

Written by jr.

August 24, 2013 at 7:46 pm

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: