In an article written yesterday, it was suggested that Major League Baseball must eliminate two teams and realign into two seven team divisions for each league (Eliminate Florida and Seattle).
There were many comments indicating that eliminating the Florida Marlins was a poor choice, especially since they have been World Champions twice since they were created in 1993. The fact that they are challenging the overrated Philadelphia Phillies this season was another factor.
Many who commented wanted to eliminate the Chicago Cubs or Boston Red Sox, which is ridiculous.
Both teams are excellent draws at the gate, are among the original teams that have existed for well over 100 years in their original city and ball park, and have a tremendous following in their city and in the country.
In 2010, the Cubs and Red Sox each drew over 3 million fans. The Marlins attendance was about 1.5 million, a figure that used to be excellent, but one that the greedy owners now consider almost unacceptable.
Only the Cleveland Indians (about 1.4 million) and the Oakland A’s (about 1.4 million) drew fewer fans than the Marlins. Both the Indians and A’s are among baseball’s original 16 teams, although the A’s were originally in Philadelphia and then in Kansas City. Both teams have too much tradition to be eliminated.
Yes, it is paradoxical to radically realign both leagues yet claim that tradition should prevent the Indians or A’s from being contracted, but there is another factor.
Having the A’s in the same division with the San Francisco Giants and the Indians in the same division with the Cincinnati Reds would boost attendance and intensify an existing rivalry.
An acceptable move would be to keep the Marlins and eliminate the Toronto Blue Jays.
Last year, the Jays drew a little over 1.6 million fans, which was the fifth worst attendance figure in baseball. They are an expansion team in a foreign country. They have no real rivals since the Montreal Expos moved.
Blue Jays players are paid in Canadian dollars, which is a problem. The currencies are close ($1 U.S. to $.95 Canada), but players have complained.
Now that the America and Canada are involved in a life and death struggle against terrorism, there are often passport or related problems when American teams visit Toronto. This is not an attempt to limit baseball teams to the United States, but not traveling to Canada might be helpful.
Tampa Bay is another good choice for elimination. They have had attendance problems despite putting winning teams on the field. Last season, they drew a little over 1.8 million.
More important than the owners’ greed is the fact that there are many players without the talent to be major leaguers. Eliminating two teams would strengthen the remaining 30 teams.
It was stated before that many of today’s top players could hold their own with players from any era. Today’s top pitchers are probably have more talent than pitchers of any other era.
The problem is that there are too many teams, which weakens every team. Two teams must be eliminated.
2010 MLB Attendance