A WAY TO MAKE BASEBALL HIGH SCORING LIKE FOOTBALL. Jo Craven McGinty had an excellent article in “The Numbers” section of the Wall Street Journal (April 11-12) taking on the question: “is baseball really dying in the shadow of its flashier rival?” She analyzes the complexities of a number of statistics in comparing baseball and football and shows that baseball is doing fine. For example, baseball “inspires devotion. It absorbs the public’s attention for 180 days, a season twice as long as the NFL.”
I do feel that I need to respond to Jo Craven McGinty’s initial statement of the media narrative on baseball. She opens her article with a statement of that narrative: “Baseball is slow, low-scoring and quiet—the opposite of the fast, loud and violent game of football.”
I have been saying for years that football does not have more scoring events than baseball. All baseball would have to do to match football would be to award 7 points for each time a runner scores. A low scoring 4 to 3 game would become a 28 to 21 game.
And football awards 3 points for field goals, which is basically a reward for almost scoring. If baseball were to adopt that approach, it could award 3 points for getting a runner to third base.