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(Chicago Breaking News)   Baseball turning to variety of bizzare sideshows to keep fans interested   (chicagotribune.com) divider line 71
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1836 clicks; posted to Main » on 24 Aug 2001 at 7:14 AM (13 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2001-08-24 07:32:40 AM
I played baseball. I umpired baseball. Baseball is the most boring game in the world. All I ever did in the field was think. It was very hard to keep my mind on the game due to the fact it was so farking boring. No offense to anyone who likes baseball, but I would rather watch flys fark. At least it's not as bad as golf...
 
2001-08-24 07:48:47 AM
Favillion, no shiat. Hmmmm, baseball is boring? fits this one pretty well.
 
2001-08-24 08:09:04 AM
To make things more interesting, I think snipers firing random shots at the crowd and players during the game would perk things right up.
seventh inning stretch, K-POW..... Barry Bonds gets winged.
 
2001-08-24 08:19:34 AM
Baseball is VERY boring, and most players are overpaid whiners. The strike hurt baseball severely. And it showed how money hungry they are. Baseball should have a salary cap, but it is past that now with A-Rod getting 1/4 of a billion dollars. Unless something drastic changes baseball at the pro level will probaby die out. Players will demand more money which cause the ticket prices to go up which means the normal middle class american family of 4 or 5 will have to save up for a month just for tickets let alone food and beverages. So what will happen? Small markets will die out, teams will move almost as regularly as players switch teams for more money. Teams will move to a new city, the fans will be excited for a few years, then it dies down the fans can't afford the tickets off to another city they go While the tax payers are stuck paying sales taxes on the new stadium that is just sitting there.
Baseball players are WAY overpaid. I remember a couple years ago when Albert Belle signed a $10 Million dollar contract with the White sox. At that time it was the biggest contract ever in baseball. Now Joe Benchwarmer who hit .225 last year with 4 RBI's and a home run thinks he deserves that.
Yes they should be rewarded for thier hard work. It took a lot of time, effort and training to get to where they are today. They should make more than Stanley Factory worker, but not what they are making now. And for the work and strain that they put on thier bodies. They should be the least paid of the 4 major professional sports. Football player and Hockey players put a lot of stress and damage on thier bodies. Thier careers are shorter, they should get a little more money during thier career. They are constantly getting injured and thier bodies wacked up and tossed around. I played football at the college level for a while before I blew a knee out. And I played hockey growing up. Baseball didn't even come close to this. Basketball players same, not as much as either of the previous two listed, but close.

I will not attend a professional baseball game anymore unless I am given the tickets for free. I would much rather see little league, high school, or the minor league team in town. They still have the main reason why so many started out playing the game. For the love of it. Now the love has been put on the back burners, way on the back burners because the money got in the way. We are losing two very class acts in the game today at the end of this season with Cal Ripken Jr and Tony Gwynn retiring. They will be missed and are two of the last who played for the love and didn't jump to the team that offered them the most money. They also had loyalty to the team and to the fans. Which is pretty much non-existant anymore. Baseball farked itself.


Just my opinon, I could be wrong.
 
2001-08-24 08:24:59 AM
The great american past time, Mr. Walken you said it. Proof that a bunch of idiots can get together and get paid to waste an a$$load of time. I really wish the strike had killed the game.
 
2001-08-24 08:42:43 AM
I attend games regulary, I don't know about the eastcoast or middle america, BUT on the westcoast the srtike of years back has NO impact, wherever I go the venues are sold out..
I personally love to watch the game..
 
2001-08-24 08:43:24 AM
Well... The game DOES suck, overall... and the players are pretty freaking dull for the millions some of em make....
 
2001-08-24 08:46:37 AM
Baseball... isn't that like, uh, American cricket?
 
2001-08-24 08:59:13 AM
If you guys think baseball is boring you should attend a game at Friendly Fenway. Every night sold out, every fan a complete psycho. And then there's the delectable Fenway franks.
 
2001-08-24 09:00:23 AM
Baseball 4.5 seconds of excitement packed into 3 hours of sports.
 
2001-08-24 09:04:47 AM
Never understood the appeal of the scoreboard "dot races".
And those t-shirt cannons killed Ned Flanders' wife!
 
2001-08-24 09:05:22 AM
Um, minor league baseball is professional.
 
fb-
2001-08-24 09:05:31 AM
Baseball is borning?!?! Uhh.. what do you do with your time instead of going to a game? Watch TV? Masturbate to porn on the web? Please, you are far more boring than baseball.
 
2001-08-24 09:26:27 AM
Baseball - dull only to dull minds.
 
2001-08-24 09:29:16 AM
I was gonna come here and rip on baseball some, but hell... it would appear that it's the general mentality that baseball is boring.

Thank goodness hockey season is just around the corner.
 
2001-08-24 09:39:14 AM
Cubs vs Sox - hmm lets see.

Cubs - Beautiful old stadium in the heart of one of the richest & trendiest parts of Chicago where all of the upper & middle class yuppies can go and skip work and drink beer in the middle of the day in the sunshine. Short taxi ride away from about a million people that do not want to be working - Team sucks.

Sox - Huge new Clean state of the art stadium in the middle of a crime ridden area that scares the shiat out of anyone who goes there. Appeals mainly to blue collar workers that save up to go to one game a season. All kinds of stuff to do in the stadium as long as you stay in the stadium. - Team is passable.

Yeah - great comparison of two tems that the only difference is the stadium
 
2001-08-24 09:43:31 AM
Vox8:
In case you haven't noticed, the Cubs are contending in the Central division - just 3 games in back of the Astros - while the White Sox are hovering around .500.
But otherwise yeah, big difference in locales and stadiums.
 
2001-08-24 09:45:08 AM
The only appeal baseball has is the beer. But I can't afford it, so it's a boring, moot point.
 
2001-08-24 09:45:53 AM
Right Pretnar, baseball is a thinking man's game. Very cerebral. Maybe, just maybe the interplay between pitcher and catcher (pitch location, selection, etc) but the rest of it is basically pitch-wait-wait-wait-wait-wait-pitch-wait-wait so forth. Meanwhile the centerfielder is scoping out the chick in the bleachers and the shortstop is contemplating his S & P rating. No wonder there are so many errors.

I was watching the Cards game the other night against the Reds. Fly to center field. Edmunds catches it and nonchalants the ball back think there's 3 outs. ONLY 2!!! Guess the game got to mental for him.

Baseball and the other major sports have become tainted. Nothing but prima donnas. I hate broadbrushing the issue but too bad.
 
2001-08-24 09:48:37 AM
I guess FB doesn't masturbate.

Hey, speaking of masturbation, doesn't one of those parks (I think Tampa?) have a hottub in it that's usually populated by Hooters-type Girlies?

woot!
 
2001-08-24 09:50:10 AM
Pretnar One season does not a ball team make. For some unknown reason the Cubbies are doing well this season - but as a general rule the cubbies suck.

Eversince I lived in Chicago I have thought that the only reasons the Cubs continue to exist is because a)the stadium is convienent to lots of dumb ass yuppies with huge disposable incomes. b)people are afraid to take their kids to Kominsky. c)The Wrigley's want a ball team (not sure the wrigley's still actually own the company but it is the same kinda thing as Turner wanting the Braves).

That and the fact that Clinton's favorite team is the Cubs is enough for me to have a strong dislike for the cubbies.
 
2001-08-24 09:52:03 AM
The game has it's moments, Like most things. But generally over all it is pretty boring like Bigpeeler just said. pitch wait wait wait pitch fly ball wait wait pitch run back to the dugout. It used to be fun for me, but I could never sit and watch a game on TV. Going to the game is a whole different story. I havn't been to a pro football or hockey game (packers tickets are hard to come by around here) and The whole ambiance is definatly something someone should experience at least once in thier life. That is one positive point. But they are just too overpaid and the time between when things happen is normally far between. And can't forget the food, beer and boobies. especially the first two and you can always find the boobies, you just have to look a little harder.
 
2001-08-24 09:52:58 AM
Um... DUH!!
 
2001-08-24 10:11:42 AM
Just a warning: I'm about to take this article seriously for a moment, so if you just came on to say how much baseball sucks you'll want to skip reading this.
Yeah, so this is a whole bunch of garbage. These "sideshow attractions" are nothing new to baseball, and there's no such thing as a "traditionalist" who's so radically against them. I mean c'mon, the seventh inning stretch has been around since 1910, and don't tell me that's not a gimmick. Bill Veeck did tons of crazy shiat with his teams - putting a midget up at the plate, "Grandstand Managers Day" where he let the crowd decide what managerial moves to make, exploding scoreboards, etc. This is all stuff that went down back in the 50s. Then we had Charles Finley, forcing his players to grow outrageous moustaches, using orange baseballs, and introducing the DH to the AL (you wanna talk about a gimmick that DIRECTLY effects the game). Mascots have been around since the 60s, for chrissake! I mean c'mon. And watching "the grounds crew drag metal screens across the infield dirt to smooth the surface"? THEY'VE ALWAYS DONE THAT!!!
I'm not saying all this stuff is good, or isn't annoying in some regard or another; yes, most of it is. I hate it when mascots get in my face while I'm trying to keep score. I hate how people cheer more for the "Great Shea Airplane Race" on the scoreboard than they do for the game. I hate how people will almost kill each other just to grab a freakin' two-dollar t-shirt. Yeah, it's pretty stupid to spend a game swimming out in the center field pool at Bank One Ballpark.
But again, we're not breaking new ground here. I'm tired of people complaining about how all these supposed "new" aspects detract from the game; how commercial it's gotten, how much the players get paid, or other such crap. Y'know what? The game has always been commercial (the Green Monster at Fenway Park used to be plastered all over with ads), people have been complaining about players' salaries since the turn of the century, and team owners have always used stupid little gimmicks to put a few more butts in the seats. Get over it.
 
2001-08-24 10:19:36 AM
"One season does not a ball team make. For some unknown reason the Cubbies are doing well this season - but as a general rule the cubbies suck."

True, true. But of course the Sox haven't won a series themselves since 1917.
I know it's different though; Cubs can't even manage a pennant once in awhile. When was the last time the White Sox got one?
 
2001-08-24 10:21:07 AM
Wrigley is truly an awesome stadium. There is something distinct about it. I couldn't put my finger on it.

I just returned from a Baseball tour of middle America and the east coast: Milwaukee, Chicago (Cubs & White Sox), Detroit, Cleveland, Cincinati, Pittsburgh, Boston and Cooperstown (of course).

Some of the new stadiums are just amazing. Miller Park and PNC have such a beautiful layout. But I am partial to Wrigley and Fenway. I change my mind each day though. Here in Boston, the process of getting a new stadium built is underway. I don't know if they should get rid of Friendly Fenway Park. I think I would miss it.

And - I used to hate baseball. I thought it was boring and slow. I have since come to appreciate the excitement of the game. It a split second, the entire game can change. Few other sports have this instant excitement.
 
2001-08-24 10:27:52 AM
StrongBad:
Heard that the new Fenway Park would have the same dimensions and characteristics of the old one, right down to the ladder on the wall (but without the obstructed views, of course). They still planning on that?
 
2001-08-24 10:44:16 AM
StrongBad -
As someone who has attended 40-50 games at Fenway, and has seen both the old and new in baseball stadium technology, AND as your slumlord, I believe I am qualified to say:

Fenway sucks, tear it down. We'll miss it for 10 seconds. The funny thing is that the people who do most of the "Save Fenway" biatching here in Boston live in Maine and attend 1-2 games a decade. Yeah, the place looks GREAT from your couch at home, but try watching a 3-hour+ game from a wooden seat designed for ladies wearing corsets. So long as they maintain the same "look and feel" of the old Fenway, a new Fenway would be a welcome change. WE PAY $20 FOR PARKING GODDAMMIT! In Pittsburgh, it's SIX BUCKS!!

Anyhoo, having gone on that same trip that StrongBad spoke of, I would like to brag that we attended the Cubs game with that wacked-out ending a couple weeks ago (runner slips going around third to score winning run, ends up in a 30-second pickle) and that ONE play alone reaffirmed my complete love for the game of baseball. I have never seen 35,000 people so happy all at once. Chicago rocks.
 
2001-08-24 10:48:15 AM
I'm staying the hell away from all sports until they come up with Deathball. THAT'S entertainment....
-------------
Announcer: And peterson goes for the ball...wait...there appears to be....Yes, folks; it's a fuse! And he's still going for it!

(BOOOM)

Announcer:Brilliant play by Peterson; he managed to foul up cameras 3 and 4, thus giving the Houston Electric Chairs a one up! The score is now Houston 5, Detroit 3, and as soon as they clean Peterson off the field, we'll be bringing out the new left-fielder!
--------------------
Take me out to the baaalll gaaammee....
 
2001-08-24 10:51:26 AM
"WE PAY $20 FOR PARKING GODDAMMIT! In Pittsburgh, it's SIX BUCKS!!"

Oh, good lord. Just park out at Riverside or something and take the T in. Not a big deal.
I do agree with you though. Catching a ballgame at Fenway is quite an experience, but it is pretty run-down. A new ballpark built with the same dimensions in the same part of the city with modern ammenities would be a big step forward.
 
fb-
2001-08-24 10:57:03 AM
Baseball isn't expensive. Here's how we did it in college. Take one sunny day. BBQ and cook out at house before the game. Drink beers before the game and on the ride there. Carpool to the game. 5 people split $7 parking. Buy the cheap nosebleed tickets for $5. Sneak down to the prime seats. Have a brew or two if you like.

It's not that expensive.
 
2001-08-24 10:57:08 AM
Pretnar,
Yeah, you can park at Riverside or Woodland or whatever, definitely viable parking options. That's not my point though.

What I am saying is, at all the stadiums we went to on the baseball tour, you can basically drive RIGHT to the place, without the hassle of parking in the suburbs, and you payy around $3-6 on average for your spot. It's just a 'modern convenience' that Fenway is definitely lacking. Before I went on the baseball tour, I didn't think that parking at the stadium was a big deal ... but shaving a few hours off your travel time definitely makes the experience a lot better.

StrongBad, would you agree?
 
2001-08-24 11:12:18 AM
as a Boston tourist, I went to Fenway, and had a good time, but those seats were very uncomfortable.

not to mention that big damn pole blocking the damn view.

Oh, and I rode the T, driving in that city is the worst anywhere at all, anyway.
 
2001-08-24 11:14:54 AM
"at all the stadiums we went to on the baseball tour, you can basically drive RIGHT to the place, without the hassle of parking in the suburbs"

Huh. When I went to PNC Park for a couple games I had a seriously tough time finding parking. Maybe it was because they were weekend games and it was mid-April when they were filling up the park every night.
I dunno. You gotta give something to get something. I think part of the charm of Fenway is that it's tucked so nicely into the surrounding area, which of course makes parking a hassle. When I go to Shea parking is a cinch, but you're right smack dab in the middle of the cesspool we call Flushing. Not very pleasing aesthetically.
Another example: Oriole Park at Camden Yards. It's an arm and a leg to park your car in one of the garages nearby, but the walk from there to the park is bustling, lined with other fans, concession stands and hotdog vendors and the like, etc. It's just a very baseball-friendly atmosphere. Walk outside of the parking lot of Shea Stadium, and it's nothing but run-down little auto parts stores. Depressing.
 
2001-08-24 11:26:30 AM
Stand...Chew...spit...walk...

Could not imagine a more complete waste of time. Well...watching porn in fast motion...yeah...that's a little worse I guess.

Suck...hump...spurt...lick...

Yeah...I suppose baseball is better than that.
 
2001-08-24 11:28:18 AM
The one constant through all the years has been baseball. America has rolled by like an army of steamrollers. It's been erased like a blackboard, rebuilt, and erased again. But baseball has marked the time. This field, this game, is a part of our past. It reminds us of all that once was good, and that could be again.
*sniff*
 
2001-08-24 11:40:20 AM
That's weird about PNC ... we got there kinda early, but there was parking everywhere we looked and, coming from Boston, we were just blown away by the price.

But nothing beats walking over the Roberto Clemente bridge to get to the stadium, looking into the field all the while. Pittsburgh really did do a great job with that place though. AND we happened to go on Bill Mazeroski night.

AND StrongBad was almost decapitated by Ryan Klesko during batting practice. Funny, funny shiat.
 
2001-08-24 11:41:36 AM
"You can't sit on a lead and run a few plays into the line and just kill the clock. You've got to throw the ball over the goddamn plate and give the other man his chance. That's why baseball is the greatest game of them all."
-Earl Weaver

Damn right. You're never playing against a clock; ALWAYS the other team. Last year I saw my Mets down 7 runs against the Braves in the bottom of the 8th inning score 10 runs and win the game on a dramatic tie-breaking Piazza homerun that must've got out of the park in about two seconds. Look at the Indians this year, coming from 12 runs down in the seventh to beat Seattle. The pitiful Pirates and their 7-run rally WITH TWO OUTS IN THE NINTH, capped by a walk-off grand slam to beat the Astros 7-6. You don't get moments like these in any other major sports. You get the winning team running out the clock.
 
2001-08-24 11:47:15 AM
BOOOOO!!!!

I used to hate baseball - the only time I liked it was when I wanted to take a nap - now I love it...

Yes, the athletes are probably overpaid - but then so are elite actors/actresses, some musicians, record company CEOs, etc, etc... But does the media have you under a microscope dissecting every move you make? There's a huge amount of money in professional sports, if the athletes aren't getting it, who is?

Havin' said that though, I don't feel like paying $5 for a dog, and $6 for a beer... Much cheaper to sneak in vodka/white ta-kill-ya in a water bottle... :P

I went to an M's game at Safeco last year... Clear blue sky, sunny day... Man... Great experience - that stadium kicks ass...

Plus, it's fun to play the game.
 
2001-08-24 11:52:40 AM
Pretnar - I could not agree with you more.

Games like basketball, football, hockey - if there's a big enough lead, the game is simply OVER. No team comes back from, say, 50 points down in a basketball game. Seven touchdowns in a football game. It actually happens more in hockey, but basically once it's over, it's over.

Baseball is great. You never know what inning a team will explode for x-many runs. That's why I can never understand why people leave the ballpark when their team is down 3-4 runs in the 9th.
 
2001-08-24 11:53:27 AM
Pretnar & SlumLord -

I don't think we are really arguing about anything here. There are certainly benefits and disadvantages to new stadiums and 'gimmicks.'

That is a great quote Pretnar. It sums up the excitement of baseball. Every sport has blow outs. But when a team is charging from a deficit, it is great to be a part of that experience.

Oh - and SlumLord used to be a Major League pitcher for 1/2 a season, so his input is particularly insightful.
 
2001-08-24 12:01:13 PM
Yeah, PNC Park is a great place. People often don't know about Pittsburgh that - although it's not much of a city - it has one of the most breathtaking skylines in the country. It always blew my mind that they didn't take advantage of that in building an enclosed Three Rivers Stadium. Idiots. At least they have attoned with PNC, which is really a work of art.
 
2001-08-24 12:05:02 PM
"SlumLord used to be a Major League pitcher for 1/2 a season"

Farking cool! Who'd you pitch for? Starter, reliever? Details dammit, details!
 
2001-08-24 12:13:47 PM
"That's why I can never understand why people leave the ballpark when their team is down 3-4 runs in the 9th."

One thing that made the Mets' 10-run rally from 7 runs down in the 8th last year so cool: it was fireworks night, so not a single fan left the stadium. They had no idea what kinda fireworks they were in for. Ha! 45,000 poor saps that would've missed it otherwise. And though I guess they would've deserved it had they left, it was nicer to hear the roar of a full house at the end instead of what would have been less than 10,000. The crowd is as much a part of the experience as anything else.
The taunting tomahawk chant of 55,000 fans as Benitez blew away the Braves in the ninth was pretty sweet.
 
2001-08-24 12:47:27 PM
oh my GOD!!! does baseball ever suck!!!!!!
 
2001-08-24 12:55:18 PM
I like some parts of baseball but I have to agree that it's, by nature, boring. Many games have only a few exciting and tense moments, and some have none at all. When you compare baseball to football or basketball its pace is downright glacial. But don't think for a moment that the US has cornered the market on sports which are largely dull. Soccer, after all, is a sport with so little to keep the fans interest that some games generate absolutely no highlights at all!

Playing is a different matter. I can see certainly see why people enjoy playing soccer. At least in soccer everyone is involved. In baseball, unless you're the pitcher, catcher, or first baseman you spend most of your time standing around ready in case something happens, oh and you bat once every 3 or so innings.
 
2001-08-24 01:17:56 PM
Fb-:I don't watch TV. Rugby is my sport. It kicks ass.
 
2001-08-24 01:28:40 PM
Hmmm for YEARS the ground crew at Yankee stadium has been doing the YMCA dance at the 5th inning when they groom the infeild but they seemed to have left that out.

I just pray that the NFL referees don't walk out. I've been so starved for football that I have been watching the pre-season games, and if those fart knockers ruin this season I'll be on a murderous rampage.
 
2001-08-24 02:07:49 PM
Cranky The article was written by a Chicago Tribune writer, so they just focused on Wrigley and Commisky.

Pretnar I will not 'out' SlumLord of his true identidy. He can tell you if he wants to. I think he is a pretty damn good player. Great to have on a softball team too!
 
2001-08-24 02:17:43 PM
I know what you mean, Cranky. Ever since the end of Hockey season (at least the Finals went 7 games this year, so we could drag out the excitement), I've been chomping at the bit for sports I enjoy (football and hockey). It's been ugly...I've been watching sportscenter all the time just in case they have some off-season football or hockey news.

I even paid attention to the NHL draft! And I have seen every preseason Broncos game thus far. IF my wife didn't hate football so much, I'd be watching EVERYONE'S preseason games. I'm even looking forward to hockey's preseason, for god's sake.

Also, going back to a point Walken made waaaaay back...the only reason I still care at all about baseball is it's the only one of the four major sports that you can still afford to go to on a normal person's salary. I will almost certainly take my son to baseball games, because you can still get pretty good seats for 20 bucks a pop. With hockey and football, particularly in Denver, you can't even get decent seats unless you have season tickets, and even the nosebleeds are 50 bucks a pop, and you have to practically kill somebody to get them. High salaries in baseball will eventually kill this, as clubs will be forced to jack up ticket prices to cover their payroll.
 
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