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A modest proposal

Published on: August 19, 2006    Categories: Misc

As a lifelong baseball fan somewhat dismayed with the currently-available coverage of the sport, I’d like to propose a change to the structure of the major leagues which might make things a bit more bearable, especially as we head into the waning days of the regular season: all it requires is adding a third league. I know this will be controversial, but bear with me.

The problem

In any given area of the country, your televised baseball viewing choices are generally limited to:

  1. The nearest major-league franchise. In my case, the Kansas City Royals. Growing up it was the Pittsburgh Pirates and the Cincinnati Reds.
  2. National sports networks, which show: the Yankees and whoever they’re playing; the Red Sox and whoever they’re playing; and the Yankees and the Red Sox whenever they play each other.

Over the course of a season, especially a season in which there are lots more interesting things happening (like the AL Central, and the West divisions of both leagues), this tends to become… what’s the word? Oh, yes, monotonous. Also, boring.

The solution

So what we need, obviously, is a new league. It would have two teams, the Yankees and the Red Sox. They would play no games against teams in the other two leagues, just 163 games against each other during the regular season and series of playoffs afterwards: three best-of-seven series, best two series out of three wins that year’s league championship.

ESPN could start an entirely new network devoted solely to broadcasting these games, and the general networks could split up the playoff series amongst themselves. The timing could be worked out so that they wouldn’t interfere with the playoffs and the World Series from the other leagues.

The advantages

There are a bunch:

Just one thing missing

In order for it to really take off, the new league would need a really catchy name, one that could be used in a nationwide marketing blitz. Just “National” or “American” wouldn’t work; previous attempts like “Federal” wouldn’t fly either. It would have to be something which captured the essence of the new league and drew upon the storied franchises it would enshrine.

My humble suggestion: The Yankox League.