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Baseball is boring. First of all, there’s 162 games in a single season, which only lasts 180 days. This year, the Atlanta Braves played a game against the Kansas City Royals on April 16th. On June 12th, about two months later, they played the San Diego Padres. In that 58 day span, they played 55 games in 12 different cities, and had 3 days off. The average game lasts a little over 3 hours, not including warming up and games that go into extra innings (earlier this year, the Oakland A’s played a 19 inning game that lasted six and a half hours). That comes out to about 600 hours of baseball in a season. That’s enough time to watch the entire LOST series five times. But let’s go deeper, how many of those 600 hours is something interesting actually happening? Time to channel some XKCD here…
First let’s define what we consider interesting in a baseball game. I’d say that a hit, a strikeout, and a great defensive play are all pretty exciting. Let’s add in a wild pitch if there is someone on base, a sacrifice fly, a steal, an error, and a play at the plate. Actually, let’s be generous and say that every single out in a game is interesting. Walks are generally pretty boring…let’s say a walk in a close game (within two runs) in the last two innings is exciting. I would say anything that advances a runner is interesting, except have you seen a balk? It’s basically just the umpire whimsically deciding that the pitcher is getting a bit cutesy.
So let’s take a recent braves game, a 3-0 loss against the Toronto Blue Jays. Here are the stats for that game. FIVE MINUTES of actual baseball is all you needed to watch to have seen everything relevant in that game. Given this was a pretty low scoring game, but still, that’s two hours and 50 minutes of sitting around. I’m getting bored just writing about it. I can’t imagine how bored you must be right now. In fact, you probably skipped this whole paragraph. Which is why I can say something like I like fat chicks here and no one will notice. Love ‘em. Love the fat chicks. Squishy.
Cal Ripken Jr holds the record of most consecutive games played with 2,632 games. That’s over 8,000 hours of baseball, without ever missing a game due to injury. How could someone play 8,000 hours of a sport without once getting injured? The answer is that baseball isn’t a sport. It’s a game. For most people, watching a baseball game lands somewhere between playing scrabble and watching someone chew gum. In fact, a good bit of an actual baseball game is basically just a bunch of men chewing and spitting (sorry!) things onto the ground. So I completely understand when people tell me that they hate baseball. But what they don’t understand is that even baseball fans think baseball is boring, we’re just usually too drunk to care.