~~ Once upon a time, the most popular sport in America was baseball. That was, until the NFL stole baseball's crown as America's favorite sport in the 60's and 70's. Since then, the NFL has thrived along with other sports like basketball, while baseball continues to go down a deep, dark path. For baseball fanatics, the burning question right now is this: what's wrong with baseball and how can the sport that everyone once loved return to glory? I'm here to answer that.
There are many reasons why baseball has lost its luster. But, the most obvious one has to do with the pace of the game. Major League Baseball games usually last about three hours, which is a stretch for most fans. Baseball is losing young fans because it is simply too slow and not fast-paced like football for example. The MLB is trying to innovate and speed up the game, but it will take more than that to attract young fans.
Baseball has lost its image. They don't have a player that stands out above the rest. Mike Trout may be considered the best player in all of baseball today, but he can't compare to LeBron James and his popularity. Baseball is a team game. One player can't win a championship or win games. In basketball, there are only five players on the court at once. LeBron can effect a game more than Trout can effect a game. In other words, baseball isn't as marketable as basketball because basketball superstars are much more appealing to the public eye than baseball superstars.
There is really no event that sets baseball apart from any other sport. Football has the Super Bowl, basketball has the NCAA Tournament and All Star Weekend, and hockey has the Stanley Cup. The World Series just can't compare to any of those events in my opinion. Major League Baseball has tried to attract fans with the Home Run Derby and for the most part it has worked. But, they need a much more formidable event to compete with other sports. I think that starts with increasing the number of teams in the postseason. That way, the season goes on longer and the MLB makes more money.
This isn't the 1930's anymore. There are a lot more options for sports fans. Over the years, hockey, basketball, and football have surpassed baseball in nearly every aspect. How can baseball keep up? They can't. Until something changes, the NFL and NBA will continue to flourish while baseball continues to lose fans. But, for baseball fans like me, baseball is still a sport that I love. Unfortunately, baseball isn't the sport it once was and it will probably never be the same again.
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