In my house, being a baseball enthusiast is not optional. You fall asleep once the game ends with the last out and you wake up to the highlights on MLB Network at breakfast the next morning. Vacations are typically a road trip of sorts to whichever stadium our team is playing at that week. Watching baseball has been the one activity that brings my family together without fail. So undoubtedly, I will argue that baseball is one of the best sports out there, and the common response of, "baseball is such a boring sport," is a complete misconception.
While I can see where this opinion is coming from, it's impossible to ignore the fact that baseball is becoming steadily less popular among younger generations. The commissioner thinks that altering a tried and true tradition, by knocking a few minutes off the game taking away intentional walk pitches and limiting pitchers mound visits, will re-engage future generations. I don't agree with these changes because getting to the heart of the issue stems from disproving the common points that non-baseball fans try to make.
"The game is sooo long."
The average MLB game time this past season was three hours and five minutes, which is only one minute longer than the average football game from the 2017 NFL season. People have no problem with NFL games holding their attention spans. Some would argue that this is because the game is not as fast paced as basketball or football, which brings me to the next complaint.
"Nothing even happens."
If by nothing happens you mean that there is not constant movement around the court or field like in basketball, football, or soccer, then I guess this is a valid statement. But there is so much that goes on between pitches that leaves room for strategy and discussion between viewers. Baseball lends itself to constant thinking between the players, managers, and fans. The many intricacies and tension throughout the entire game make baseball the type of sport that is more enjoyable the more you know about it.
"It's slow paced."
I guess you could argue that baseball lacks the constant movement up and down the court or field that other sports boast, but baseball makes up for this aspect in so many ways. Baseball doesn't have a salary cap which means that you have both be big city, money spending, free agent buying teams as well as low market teams that build their farm systems. You never have the same teams consistently winning or the same matchup like the NBA. In basketball, you need star players to win. Football, you need a solid quarterback and to a certain extent, you need star players in the same way that you do in basketball. There are so many MLB teams that rise to be playoff contenders from nothing within a few seasons, making for a dynamic league and playoff picture every single year. And as far as the pace of the game itself, I can see how at a glance other sports would seem to hold an onlooker's attention for longer. But if you look at the number of commercial breaks the NFL has nowadays between timeouts, penalties, kickoffs, and punt returns, the amount of time you spend watching the action part of the game itself is not too different from baseball.
* * *
My last, probably most overused, but also the most important point is the fact that no other sport can hold the title "America's Pastime." There is a tradition and a history behind baseball that's more deeply rooted in America's history than any other sport. There is something so nostalgic about being at the ballpark on a summer day with your friends or family. With its rich history, baseball ties generations and brings people together. Hopefully, this tradition will remain deeply rooted in American culture, so that others can experience the magic that being raised in a baseball family brought me.