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Problems With the World Baseball Classic

Austin Darrow

 

The World Baseball Classic will conclude tonight and for the first time ever, Team USA is in the finals. How many people care? Not many.

The WBC is a sporting event that is magical for baseball fans, but to the rest of the sports world, the country is just half in.

Meaning if the U.S. wins it, than everyone will be happy and chant USA for a day. If they lose, oh well, didn’t expect them to go this far.

The biggest problem is MLB owners not wanting most players to participate. Part of the problem is the season it is in.

The tournament is going on during the end of the NBA season, and the March Madness tournament. A lot of focus is on the college tournament. Most of the US games are on at 9 PM. For the average person, that means the game isn’t getting over till 12:30-1 AM every time.

No person working early the next morning is going to stay up all night to watch these games. Meaning not many people watched Adam Jones’ game saving catch against the Dominican Republic. This is why ratings aren’t there.

I feel like if it were more in the summer—which I get would be tough—then more people would watch this. The NHL gives up a few weeks for the Olympics, to let their players participate.

Also, the network that plays this is MLB Network. How many people have the total sports package with their TV provider?

The major networks that play the MLB postseason aren’t picking these games up. I believe if TBS, TNT or Fox picked this tournament up, this would be more of a bigger thing in the U.S.

Every four years, people only care about the players who aren’t playing for the teams. The US born players don’t treat this as a big deal, the foreign players know how much this means to their country.

Clayton Kershaw, Madison Bumgarner, Corey Kluber, Noah Syndergaard, Chris Sale, Mike Trout, Kris Bryant. Those are notable names that turned down the opportunity to represent America.

That’s a little upsetting as a fan of baseball, because Team USA would be so incredible to watch. Granted the position players for them are very good, but their rotation could be better. If a player is battling or coming off an injury, than yes you’re excused, but I just don’t like how these players are rejecting this opportunity.

All 30 MLB teams and the players need to get together and figure this whole thing out. Where is the dedication? If the MLB teams aren’t going to accommodate their players as they would for Spring Training, than just fold the event.

These players are missing meaningless preseason games, they’re facing better competition in the WBC. This event has the opportunity to be something great for the sports globe. We all watch Team USA basketball pummel teams in the Olympics. So why not watch Team USA, fully loaded, face the DR or Puerto Rico, the excitement is there.

If this was a summer time tournament, than the hype would be there. Tonight’s game will be so fun to watch. Puerto Rico has Francisco Lindor, Carlos Correa, Javier Baez, and Yadier Molina playing. This is going to be a great battle.

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