It was recently announced that baseball and softball have returned to the Olympics from 2020 on. PhilliesNation.com - my favorite Phillies blog - has posted a Writers' Roundtable Discussion on it here. I offered my comments, which are a mix of some of theirs. I expand on those here:
Americans - myself included - hardly watch the All-Star Game (ASG) and barely tune into the World Baseball Classic (WBC). I do not mind following a World Championships-Olympics-NHL model:
- Quadrennial Olympic Games in 2020, 2024, 2028, etc. - in lieu of ASG like the NHL
- ASG follows in 2021, 2025, 2029, etc.
- Quadrennial WBC in 2022, 2026, 2030, etc. - similar schedule to World Championships
- ASG follows in 2023, 2027, 2031, etc.
One thing is for sure... the decision-making process by MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred (scheduling these events) will be intriguing to follow.
Speaking of Manfred, I also like the changes he suggests in which the strike zone is decreased by ~2" at the bottom. Those balls are harder to hit and the result of that change will be two-fold: more balls in play along with possibly quicker walks. I also like the quicker IBB suggestion, too. This, to me, certainly seems to be a creative way to speed up games. There's obviously more work needed on pace of play, along with the anti-collisions rules and, in a much smaller part, replay. So far so good!
Back to the Olympics, what are your thoughts on this? Feel free to leave a comment on this post. See ya!