Friends, I’m not going to relitigate all the plans, ideas, nagging thoughts, proposals and wet dreams of every person involved with MLB and the players union to restart playing the game. First, most of them are crap, worse, unrealistic crap. Second, none of them have threatened happening.
On Sunday it was reported the latest concepts would be to start in late June or early July, and have each team play roughly 80 games which would be played in home ballparks. This is the most realistic outcome I’ve seen but even this faces some rather troubling obstacles. New York minimally is going to struggle to be cleared for that to take place, and I’m leaving it there with the obvious.
For a moment though, let’s wash away all the what ifs and maybes. Let’s pretend this is a done deal, should we as Pirates fans be perhaps a bit excited? I ask this for a couple reasons. First, this has been a pretty damn good first half team despite finishing with less than acceptable records. And second, say they win it all, would you feel it was a real win? I mean, sure, the Astros straight up cheated and won, so winning in a shortened and bastardized season should at least be better than that right?
I’m struggling with this if I’m honest. I’ve been an aware Pirates fan since 1984 or so, and I’ve obviously never seen a championship. So, part of me says, hell yeah, I’ll take it. The pragmatist in me however feels like if any other team I didn’t really believe had the goods to get it done pulled it off, I’d consider it tainted or at the very least an oddball.
Another thing that scares me about this potential success is the false perception it could create within the organization about how close they really are. After 80 games, the Pirates and Dodgers will have vastly closer records than after 162. That’s just math.
I want baseball at the end of the day, I’ll take it in any form they can make it happen, but this side effect is something I just can’t get out of my mind. To be clear, I don’t think saying we’re only playing 80 games makes the Pirates a lock or favorite, nothing like that. I’m just saying, championship teams are typically built for marathons, while the lesser lights are traditionally geared up for sprints. Time that sprint right and there is a very real possibility a Pirates or Rockies club squeaks into the conversation.
So, Pittsburgh, if the improbable takes place how would you take it? Would you attend the parade (no matter what that looks like at this point), or would you feel like yet again the Bucs had become All Star Break champions?
Might as well make the best of it, because if we do in fact move forward with a season that short, I see no way they have a trade deadline at all. If they can’t trade Chris Archer I don’t know what many fans will have to root for besides a short season championship.
No way there isn’t an asterisk, even if the expected happens and the Dodgers win, they’ve lost how many now? The rub would be they needed the short season to pull It off. It’s probably time to realize 2020 is simply going to be the year of weird, next Seattle will have to play with the roof closed permanently to protect players from the murder hornet invasion.
Go to bed 2020, you’re drunk.