Olympic baseball gold medal to be decided with penalty kicks

Well, sorta. Check out this stroke of genius.

IBAF changes rules for extra innings

DURHAM, N.C. (AP)—Extra innings will have a new look in what could be baseball’s last Olympic appearance.

Each team’s at-bat in the 11th inning and beyond will begin with runners on first and second bases. Teams may start the 11th at any point in their batting order under format changes announced Friday by the International Baseball Federation and adopted in time for next month’s Beijing Games.

You read that right. In the hotly contested championship game, after a game where both starting pitchers have gone 10 perfect innings, the top of the 11th will begin with Cuba’s leadoff and #2 hitters on base and their #3, 4 and 5 guys coming to the plate.

Wow, talk about tradition taking the mother of all nard-stompings.

If this doesn’t junk up the game sufficiently, and just in case the game remains tied after the 11th, here are some other tiebreaking ideas the IBAF (the International Bureau of Asshat Fuckwits) might consider:

  • after the 11th inning: aluminum bats (or do they already use aluminum in the Olympics? I can’t remember)
  • after the 12th inning: Ball 1 – take your base!
  • after the 13th inning: steroids are legal
  • after the 14th inning: substitute a high-tech ball that’s the size of a softball and flies like a golf ball
  • after the 15th inning: fielders can’t use gloves
  • after the 16th inning: pitcher has to throw underhanded
  • after the 17th inning: pitcher has to throw underhanded from second base
  • after the 18th inning: coach-pitch
  • after the 19th inning: a fan is selected randomly to pitch
  • after the 20th inning: screw pitching – batter now gets to hit off a tee
  • after the 21st inning: baserunners can use motorcycles when stealing
  • after the 22nd inning: game will be decided by ESPN Major League Baseball on X-Box

Can you tell how I feel about this idea?

9 replies »

  1. I’m not even all that big of a baseball fan, but I do understand a bit how the whole game has a mystique and randomness about it that makes the outcome interesting from game to game. Screwing with the rules such as they have just to make it “manageable from a television and operational standpoint” is an abomination.

  2. Well, it doesn’t exactly make baseball relevant to the modern world, but it’s a start.

    I say, “Vive la revolution!”

  3. That’s not baseball. The beauty of the game (aside from the zen like concentration necessary to play it) is the statistical chess match of playing percentages. Do you put in the left handed reliever to get batter A out? If you use that reliever now for one batter will you have enough pitchers to complete the game? Etc. They might as well end tied games with a home run derby.

    Baseball – the best sports metaphor for life, i.e. failing 70% of the time still makes you one of the greatest of all time – is a thinking person’s game, and the world is, unfortunately, no longer much inclined to think. We want action!

  4. This is yet another good reason to drop baseball and include rugby.

    Who cares if the US doesn’t like it or will never win the gold? In fact, sometimes it’s good – and funny – to see the US get its collective ass kicked (e.g. the last two world basketball championships).

    Rugby is played by 80 countries which is more than is baseball, and it looks good both in person and on TV. *And* rugby doesn’t need overtime.