Daily Blog 6/17: No, Home Runs Are Not Bad for Baseball

Written by Nathan Bloechl on June 17, 2019

By: Nathan Bloechl — sports@kilj.com 

This is the first in a series of daily blogs here at KILJ. Read them or don’t!  Something fresh and fun for sports at KILJ. 

KILJ — Late last week famed baseball scribe Ken Rosenthal  of The Athletic and Fox Sports posted an article detailing the ill-effects the home run ball has on baseball in it’s current state.

Rosenthal posited that the rising number of home runs this year are over-saturating the game and making fans numb to arguably the greatest spectacle in the game.

The same kind of adjustment is now necessary. Fans love homers. Children, and many adults, love sugar. But at some point, enough is enough. How can teams accurately evaluate hitters in the current environment? How can they accurately evaluate pitchers? Statistics determine how players are paid. And every night, often several times a night, something happens that is just . . .  not . . . normal.” Rosenthal said in his piece, titled It’s not baseball, it’s Bludgeon Ball, and it’s ruining the game. 

I find it unique that Rosenthal, especially  in that anecdote, outwardly agrees that fans love home runs — but he thinks only in moderation.

WHAT?!

For the common fan, let’s say me, you or your mom, dad, sister etc.,  home runs the singular most exciting play in the game, aren’t they?

Maybe I’m too new school, then.

But I tend think watching guys hit moonshot home runs is way more fun than walks, bunts and seeing-eye singles.

I think instead of clinging, as Rosenthal does in his piece, to the axioms of yesteryear, that baseball — and their fans — adapt to players embracing the launch angle era.

Players are intentionally hitting the ball in the air to create more home runs, which in turn brings more people to the ballpark, which creates more revenue for the sport.

The logic in me is confused.

Baseball desperatley needs star power and excitement.

You’d think that the home run ball would be celebrated and lauded.

For me, it is.

For others, such as Rosenthal, it’s not.

Home runs are fun — that’s all there is to it.