Make Baseball Fun Again (College Baseball)


#1

I’m writing because I just can’t seem to wrap my head around the fact that even though I am a soon to be College Baseball Player, it is boring(to watch). It is the red headed step child to every sport essentially. No passion, no fan base, no enthusiasm. I don’t get it. Average Joes who turn on ESPN will almost automatically change the channel because of how boring it is. I don’t know what I can do to make it better but I just want to share my opinion on this and hear everyone elses. It’s pretty crazy that a game that is our NATIONAL PAST TIME has to be bailed out by Football at every school besides 3 to even have a program. Honestly to me it seems embarrassing. Everyone in almost any town in America will go see the Football game on Friday night or in the case of College on Saturday and we all know how Sundays go. But you will never hear anyone say, “Man I really want to go the HS baseball game!” and that goes for college too.


#2

Apples and oranges.
Football is probably more entertaining to watch, particularly on tv…it translates really well. Baseball is better live in my opinion. Almost all sports lose money at the college level. Football and basketball are money makers for many schools, but, not all. There are few baseball programs that are self supporting. As you head off to college you may be forced to do fundraising stuff for you college team…depends on the team. Most sports don’t draw well at the amateur level.
As for the high school baseball game who is going? A few fans, but, mostly parents and grandparents. Basketball will draw some student body and football draws the best. It is a social event and vibe is different at those sports. These are not “fans” so to speak. The towns in the south and Texas ect where a high school football game draws 10,000 people…man, I do not understand that at all. Just don’t get it. I think many of those folks need to get a hobby, but, that is just me. So, if high school baseball does not have the social element for the student body that basketball and football do, why would anyone but parents, grandparents or a few friends of players go? Generally, it is not good baseball.
Baseball as a whole is fine.
Professional baseball is swimming in money. Swimming in it. Travel ball continues to grow (whether that is a good thing or not is another discussion).
Where I live (I don’t think what is happening here is what is happening everywhere) there was one travel ball organization 8 years ago or so. Now there are 5. There are a couple of other teams that have just one or two teams, summer ball/college teams. This is huge growth in a small period of time for an area without huge population (about 240,000 in the city and 340,000 in the county). Youth soccer is stagnant. Football (I am sure because of injury concerns) is shrinking…the local Pop Warner league has had to consolidate teams because of shrinking enrollment.
The big advantage football has over other sports in terms of hype is they play once a week. Baseball is a nearly daily activity during the season…check in on a game, channel surf, come back. When I come home from work many nights I can find a MLB game on a local channel and another 3 or 4 on extended channels. The minor league team where I live has games on local tv once a week. The NBA can’t even get their playoffs (except for the finals) on a major network. Hockey, the same.
Don’t worry about counting heads in the seats of your games.
Just remember, just because McDonalds sells more hamburgers than everyone else doesn’t mean the food is good.


#3

Awesome reply! Some awesome points in there. I just am frustrated because the atmosphere is so dull and passion-less, most places. It would be so much better if there was a buzz around the games. Maybe hyping up Friday night games as a big deal could create a stir for some universities. I don’t think I have a solution to this but I just feel like it is a dis service to such a great game that is so overlooked. People enjoy big crowds, people enjoy excitement and passion out of the players and pride in the teams they cheer on. I think people want to be passionate about this game but for some reason, it just for some reason isn’t giving the people what they want. Or maybe it’s just what I want. I’m curious to see if anyone else thinks this is also a problem or issue. Also, my favorite line, “Just because McDonalds sells more hamburgers than everyone else doesn’t mean the food is good.”


#4

Part of the issue you’re voicing has to do with the pace of the game. The game is slow. MLB has even taken steps to speed up the game. Despite these efforts, I swear Dbacks games have slowed down. I do get tired of watching batters tighten their batting gloves after every pitch.


#5

Totally agree, it kills it for me. No fun. Tuesday day game with two awful teams playing and this guy who’s batting .213 keeps fixing his gloves. I want to break my TV. So boring. I also think that the city it’s placed in has to do with part of the problem. Uh hm Oakland… move them to Vegas.


#6

…and college double headers, especially back to back on the weekend where we played 4 games over 2 days, are the absolute worst. We’d be out there for the entire day when you factor in BP, field prep, and everything else. It was like a Civil War reenactment. I wouldn’t even call it baseball.

HOWEVER, piano lessons suck too. Pick any instrument – it sucks. So does learning calc, or writing a well-researched paper, or preparing for a presentation, or going to grad school, or training for a marathon, or trying to get a first job out of school that you really like (and that also pays the bills), or anything worthwhile. The process part sucks. The practice part sucks. And, yes, even the game part sucks.

I think you just really need to find your own motivation. Most great athletes or performers are perfectly fine being a loner, and they get satisfaction from the almost negligible improvements made every day to see just how far they can push their body, mind, skill, etc. But add those hours up over time, and real strides happen. I’m not sure that makes baseball itself any more fun, but most things in life honestly aren’t that fun.

I still think baseball is the greatest game on earth. I might just ban double-headers :slight_smile:


#7

Ya’ll must be doing it wrong. Haha. Here are the on-campus attendance records. Notice a pattern? We do baseball right at MSU.

And wait until we get our new stadium built.
https://www.google.com/search?q=mississippi+state+new+baseball+stadium&biw=1811&bih=948&tbm=isch&imgil=Lj6ZewlsBdq68M%3A%3BenWKE8vTOO4CWM%3Bhttps%253A%252F%252Fhailstatebeat.wordpress.com%252F2014%252F08%252F12%252Fdetails-on-plans-for-msus-new-baseball-stadium%252F&source=iu&pf=m&fir=Lj6ZewlsBdq68M%3A%2CenWKE8vTOO4CWM%2C_&usg=__rT2QR6xpf3Gmu2y4WeUx2xRiByc%3D&ved=0ahUKEwjcmcez_pHOAhVJ2oMKHRppAfIQyjcIJw&ei=jcqXV5yfD8m0jwSa0oWQDw#imgrc=Lj6ZewlsBdq68M%3A

Top 25 on-campus college baseball crowds of all-time[edit]

1 15,586[22] Ole Miss at Mississippi State Dudy Noble Field Starkville, Mississippi April 12, 2014
2 15,078[23] Texas A&M at Mississippi State Dudy Noble Field Starkville, Mississippi April 16, 2016
3 14,991 Florida at Mississippi State Dudy Noble Field Starkville, Mississippi April 22, 1989
4 14,562 Auburn at Mississippi State Dudy Noble Field Starkville, Mississippi April 20, 2013
5 14,556 LSU at Mississippi State Dudy Noble Field Starkville, Mississippi April 16, 1988
6 13,761 Arkansas at Mississippi State Dudy Noble Field Starkville, Mississippi April 25, 1992
7 13,715 Clemson at Mississippi State Dudy Noble Field Starkville, Mississippi June 9, 2007 NCAA Super Regionals
8 13,617 Georgia at Mississippi State Dudy Noble Field Starkville, Mississippi April 8, 2006
9 13,452[24] Arizona at Mississippi State Dudy Noble Field Starkville, Mississippi June 11, 2016 NCAA Super Regionals
10 13,324 Ole Miss at Mississippi State Dudy Noble Field Starkville, Mississippi April 11, 2014
11 13,123 Ole Miss at Mississippi State Dudy Noble Field Starkville, Mississippi April 15, 2000
12 13,004[25] Florida at Mississippi State Dudy Noble Field Starkville, Mississippi April 18, 2015
13 12,913[26] Arizona at Mississippi State Dudy Noble Field Starkville, Mississippi June 10, 2016 NCAA Super Regionals
14 12,727 South Carolina at LSU Alex Box Stadium Baton Rouge, Louisiana April 27, 2013
15 12,708 Auburn at Mississippi State Dudy Noble Field Starkville, Mississippi April 24, 1993
16 12,620 Clemson at Mississippi State Dudy Noble Field Starkville, Mississippi June 8, 2007 NCAA Super Regionals
17 12,589[27] Mississippi State at Arkansas Baum Stadium Fayetteville, Arkansas April 25, 2015
18 12,472 New Orleans at LSU Alex Box Stadium Baton Rouge, Louisiana February 14, 2014
19 12,360 Georgia at Mississippi State Dudy Noble Field Starkville, Mississippi April 6, 2002
20 12,313 Alabama at LSU Alex Box Stadium Baton Rouge, Louisiana April 17, 2010
21 12,193 Ole Miss at LSU Alex Box Stadium Baton Rouge, Louisiana March 17, 2013
22 12,589[28] Missouri State at Arkansas Baum Stadium Fayetteville, Arkansas June 6, 2015 NCAA Super Regionals
23 12,164 Ole Miss at LSU Alex Box Stadium Baton Rouge, Louisiana March 14, 2015
24 12,153 Oklahoma at LSU Alex Box Stadium Baton Rouge, Louisiana June 8, 2013 NCAA Super Regionals
25 12,085 Sam Houston State at LSU Alex Box Stadium Baton Rouge, Louisiana May 31, 2013 NCAA Regionals


#8

Truth! Motivation comes from within. You need to have a love for the game.

When I was young, hoops was my game. In grade school I would go to school an hour early every day as a bunch of us would play a game of hoops before class. My best friend would also go an hour early but, instead of playing with us, he would go to an empty court by himself and just shoot. And shoot and shoot and shoot. In his senior year of high school, guess who was the state scoring champion in Arizona? :wink:


#9

Awesome reply! I have no problem with being motivated for my practices/ lifts and games, I am already amped up. I just think that from an outsiders perspective it can absolutely suck and turn potentially the future of our game away and to football and basketball. Im glad this is starting a good convo!


#10

Thats awesome. I wish college baseball was like this nationally just as football and baseball is. Or at least a good majority of the teams worth watching. It’s a pretty cool thing when your community has pride in your team. I think that only a few schools really can say that. Ole Miss, MS ST, and LSU for a few.


#11

Thats an awesome thing but I think you may be missing my point. I personally do not need any extrinsic motivation to work and play baseball, nor do I think most college players need that type of motivation to get after what they love. I just think that our game in the college ranks, and even some pro teams just don’t have the fan base and the sense of excitement and pride in their team like the other sports do. Football Bball.


#12

JRS, I think MSU’s baseball team attendance is so high because of several things:

  1. Team has been really good for a LONG time, never won the College World Series but has been many times.
  2. Has always had one of the best stadiums and fields in college ball. The field and park have dropped in ranking lately because it is outdated but that is about to change with our new stadium.
  3. Left Field Lounge. It is an experience like no other in college baseball. We harass the heck out of the opposing outfielders but feed them grilled food between innings. You are able to bring your own food and “drinks” in to the park in a cooler and cook in the outfield. Our Left Field Lounge even has it’s own entry in Wikipedia.
    4… Attendance is a monster that feeds itself. Everyone wants to be a part of the big weekends.
  4. Plus our football team has not been good for most of our history so we have focused on baseball.

One note: at a Starkville regional several years ago, Notre Dame was playing in a game not against MSU. There were over 10,000 there. One of the Notre Dame players mentioned that seemed like there were more people at that game than had been at all of their home games combined. I am sure that that was a little of an exaggeration.

Steve, how could you ban double headers? I loved playing double headers, even here in Mississippi, where it gets over 100 degrees with humidity WAY HIGH.


#13

Lots of people find baseball boring because baseball is for smart people. If you’re just watching, it’s boring, but if you are thinking between the pitches, it’s highly engaging mentally.


#14

I was passing by and I just had to send a few rounds down range on this one…

The name of the game - regardless of the sport, is PROMOTION… PROMOTION … PROMOTION. Promotion means spending money by those that know how to sell, what they’re selling and WHO their selling to. Take the NFL - promotion at the highest level… a fan base that sold 24/7.

Baseball has a temperament of sitting back on it’s backside and waiting for it (fans/attention/fans). What baseball needs at all levels is a little pro wrestling hype… you know… showmanship. That['s why the Majors are called the Show in the first place… has little to do with much less. Even the hapless Cubs (sorry Steve) have a fan base that’ll come close to burning someone’s house down if someone even thinks of relocating the franchise… and the Red Sox, that unending soap opera here in Massachusetts… talk about tweaking the dial season after season.

Now before someone starts with the starch collars and the National Pastime stuff, give a rest. If you want the game to attract people in droves, if you want the game to be a draw with a stadium of cheering rabid fans, if you want the sports page to splash pictures and hint of making a hero out of a some local freckle faced kid from nowhere U.S.A. … PROMOTE THE THING.

To wrap this post of mine up — it takes money well spent, well thought-out, well targeted and well timed to make a sport profitable, both in fans and revenue. Watch the WWE and how they promote and you’ll get a glimpse of the masters of story book telling. Then watch the pregame antics of any NFL game… see any tailgate parties at every Major League game, a college game, or a youth game? So, if you’re gone play … $PAY$…

Coach B. (retired)


#15

I think TV kills baseball and is horrible for kids trying to learn the game… The camera follows the ball only, and then if someone grounds out, it follows the hitter back to the dugout, who cares about watching a guy jog back to his dugout. Pan back after the hit and show the entire field, how far the player goes to get the ball, how every player is moving, who’s backing up where… Show the players going around the horn after a strikeout, you know having a little fun… Anything but the player jogging back to his dugout…And how about having someone in the booth who has a clue about the game…And mention why a play was made the way it was or what someone should be doing in the situation
I’d like to see sponsorship logos in the corner of the tv like they do sometimes during movies where a sponsors pays to have their logo there instead of commercial breaks…cut down the time between innings and show the players warming up.

…MLB, some of the teams, and their networks have teamed up with Samsung VR and has 3D Cameras all over the park and nearly on the field and you can view a game choosing any angle, some have views just like you are on the field during the play. It’s in beta and they only did a few games…and I don’t have a Samsung phone or VR… but that sounds pretty cool to me.
Mike up some players during the game… like Coach B says, MLB needs to put some effort into it.


#16

body-cams would be awesome during an MLB game if you could stabilize them enough. I did enjoy the ump-cam during the last CWS. Most people, myself included, have never stood in the box with 90+ MPH pitches coming at you so it would be great to see what the batter sees, or get a first person view of a short stop fielding a hard ground ball off {insert MLB player with 100+ bat speed}'s bat. Fortunately, all of that is a lot closer to happening than not.