Our good friend over at Indians Baseball Cards has fired up the Blog Bat Around. The topic: With Bud Selig supposedly retiring in 2012 (and assuming the end of the world doesn't follow soon afterward), if YOU were asked to become the next Baseball Commissioner, what would you do? What changes would you like to make, what things would you leave as-is, what would you like to see as your legacy when your retirement time came?
I thought about this and had some things I would like to see. Some won't be popular and some may not get done, but here we go.
On Field Moves:
- First, the league would be expanded to 32 teams. I think that there should be 8 four team divisions, with a re-alignment of teams. You could do a North, South, East, and West or however is preferred.
- Second, the schedule would be reduced to 144 games or less. Nobody wants November baseball.
- Third, all teams on the West coast should make only two trips to the East coast, and vice versa. This would save teams money in travel costs.
- One thing that would be very unpopular but I would like to see is the DH rule used in BOTH LEAGUES! everyone likes offense, so give the people what they want.
- Institute a partial instant replay system. This would be done by a fifth umpire in the booth. Managers get one challenge per game, and all other decisions would be made upstairs similar to college football. It was used in the Little League World Series and didn't take long at all. It would not be available for balls and strikes, but fair-foul, safe or out and similar calls.
- The all-Star game would not have an effect on home field advantage in the World Series. Do you expect me to believe that a Mariners player cares if the Yankees have home field in the World Series?
- I want a Salary Floor & Cap. I think that a system similar to the NHL would work. Teams must spend a minimum, but also only allowed to spend so much. If you go over the cap, the percentage that you go over will be applied to a discount in ticket prices the next year. Owners that try to institute a 20-30 year rebuilding plan(Royals, Pirates, Nationals, Mariners, etc.) will be severely fined out of their own pocket.
- Rookies will have a slotted salary format for the players taken in the first round of the draft. There would also be a cap on the salaries similar to the NBA. The days over Strasburg, and Bryce Harper would teams hostage until the last minute will cease. Here's what you will make- take it or leave it.
- Also there would be tougher testing for all PED's including HGH. In both the minors and majors there would be monthly random testing for all things including weed, steroids, and all other new things that come along. This would include blood testing. There would be wording in all contracts to submit to testing or face banishment form the league.
- Find a new system to have players elected to the Hall of Fame. While some players do not deserve to be recognized due to cheating their way to records, the players that worked hard during those times that continue to be passed up should be admitted. There any many players from the past days that today's kids should know who they are, but don't.