As social media newsfeeds are blowing up with general excitement over the tremendous night of baseball that just was, one thing becomes painfully obvious to me:
Baseball needs to add another wildcard, immediately.
No, I’m not just saying this because the Jays are mired in a difficult division where they must contend with the Yankees, THIRD PLACE Red Sox, AMERICAN LEAGUE WILD CARD WINNING Rays and heck, even the gritty, BOSTON-BEATING Orioles.
No, I’m not suggesting this as a Blue Jays fan, I’m suggesting this as a baseball fan.
Tonight was downright exciting. Diehard fans tuned in to watch the game, fairweather fans tuned in to watch the game, I’m sure even some people who don’t ever watch much baseball even tuned in once they realized the magnitude of what was going on. Basically, many more eyeballs were interested in taking in these games because they had playoff implications. Unless, of course, you are a baseball fan in Tampa, in which case you probably either didn’t show up to the ballpark, or left halfway through (SERIOUSLY how were they not able to fill their ballpark with such a big game against the Yankees? But, I digress, back to the topic).
Quite simply, more playoff positions to vie for will automatically mean more late-season games that have playoff implications and more baseball buzz. Normally, I wouldn’t pay much concern to the last game of the season and to be honest, I didn’t even realize the Jays’ last game of the year was an afternoon affair and I didn’t end up seeing it.
That being said, tonight I was jacked up for the games and while I ended up missing the first parts as I was at work, I caught the most important parts at the end and gave my remote a workout switching from one game to the next, while subsequently wishing my TV had picture-in-picture-in-picture.
So, Bud Selig, whatever has to be done, let’s get some more teams in playoff pushes late in the season. Let’s give some new franchises the opportunity to be contenders. Let’s set up scenarios where with a week to go in the season there could be half a dozen teams still in contention for one remaining playoff spot. Let’s bring back some regular season excitement to a game that can start to get a little slow for fans of teams that aren’t perennial pennant contenders.
Let’s add another wild card spot to each league.
It really seems to be a no brainer to me.