As an Atlanta Braves fan for my entire life, I have never seen Atlanta Braves fans stop a game by throwing trash onto the field. Today, during the Braves-Cardinals playoff game, after a very poor invocation of the infield fly rule, Braves reigned refuse onto Turner Field in a flurry worthy of, well, Phillies or Eagles fans. The problem is not the infield fly rule; the problem is the idiocy of a one game MLB playoff game after a 162 game season.
First, a word about the call in question: a fly ball was lofted out into left field with the Braves having runners on first and second base. The umpire invoked the infield fly rule late and not when (as is required by the infield fly rule) the fielder was camped under the fly. A terrible call, and frankly, I understand fans’ frustration.
You see, Bud Selig, all baseball fans follow their teams for 162 games from April to the end of September. 162 games. We are not talking about football and 12 games. In what world does the commissioner of baseball think it is wise (and more importantly, fair) to bring 162 games to 1? Especially since baseball is predicated upon winning the series? Excellence over time is rewarded…or in 2012 thrown away in 9 innings and one game.
Note…the Atlanta Braves beat the St. Louis Cardinals 5 out of 6 games during the regular season…
The villain is not the umpire who made the call (and let’s be real here…the Braves played poorly in the field). The villains are not the fans who erupted in understandable rage. The announcers on TBS continually called the fans’ behavior ‘embarrassing’. I disagree. The embarrassment is Bud Selig and the corporate suits that decided a one game playoff was a good idea for Major League Baseball.
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