Aug 272002
 
Authors: Joshua Pilkington

A recent ad campaign for Major League Baseball and Visa featuring memorable moments from baseball’s past concludes in a rather awkward manner.

As he finishes describing the impact of some of baseball’s historical moments, the narrator announces that Major League Baseball will name its most memorable moment – as voted by the fans – at the 2002 World Series.

Such a statement brings to mind one question: if there is no 2002 World Series, does baseball have a memorable moment?

August 30, the day MLB’s players have set as a strike date, is now only two days away and if the player’s union does not feel confident about the direction of labor negotiations – and at last check there was little confidence by the union or the owners — the players will walk and baseball as we know it, is finished.

Yet, not that many people seem to care.

Since August 19, the day the players went public with the strike date, pollsters from around the nation have been working diligently to find out what fans think about the possibility of baseball undergoing its ninth work stoppage in 30 years.

The results are in and they are not pretty.

On Aug. 22, the Denver Post asked fans how they would react to another strike. Of the more than 20,000 who responded 53 percent said they “didn’t care and were fed up with the constant bickering in baseball,” while a mere 8 percent said they would continue watching the game.

A similar poll taken by CNNSI.com on August 25 asked fans: “How optimistic are you that baseball’s labor war will be settled by Friday?”

Again the results were less than positive for anyone involved with MLB.

Of the 35,180 who responded, 57 percent said they “couldn’t care less.”

The fact that negotiations continue is absurd. If either side were to have the least bit of common sense, they would have settled this thing after last season’s World Series.

It’s not like baseball has been getting fans by the droves recently. In fact, attendance figures as a whole have dropped since the last players’ strike in 1994, which eliminated over 500 games including the postseason and World Series.

The fact of the matter is people just aren’t interested in baseball anymore.

CSU junior and history major Korey Wright summed it up when he said: “I’ll go to a game every now and then, but I won’t watch (baseball) on TV or follow it in the paper.”

Wright’s statement illustrates the growing trend among today’s fan. With so many outlets of entertainment to choose from, who wants to sit and watch 18 guys play on a field for 3 hours or more?

True, the game is filled with history; however, baseball needs to do something to get today’s fans back into the game.

We always hear about how great the game was, about all those memorable plays and hits and how today’s game is tarnished and faulty.

It’s time for baseball to put the past where it belongs and taper the game to a new generation of fans.

If baseball wants to save itself it needs to stop telling us how great the game was and let us know how great the game is.

And walking away from the game is not the best way to go about it

 Posted by at 5:00 pm

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