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Does Blogging Ruin Baseball?

Posted on November 30, 2010 at 11:51 AM
Filed Under: General Baseball | St. Louis Cardinals
With the cold wind blowing and baseball's hot stove still not heating up to a nice cozy temperature, there's not much to talk about.  However, when three stars of the baseball firmament align in baseball heaven, well, it deserves a mention.

Bob Costas, Bill James and Joe Posnanski were in St. Louis last night, talking about sports and sports coverage, most especially baseball.  What seems to have been a major talking point was the downside to the saturation coverage that not only the 24/7 news channels bring to the game, but the numerous different blog sites that also cover things. As one of those numerous different blog sites that covers things as well as the head of two different groups filled with those kind of sites, I feel I should weigh in a little bit on that topic.

It seems that the biggest drawback to this coverage, in the opinion of those there, was the lack of romance in the game now.  That everything is pinned down, hammered out, and there is nothing left to enjoy.  I think there is a point there, I do.  I'm a traditional guy, a purist, however you want to phrase it.  I tear up at Field of Dreams and have a healthy regard for the players in the past, many of which didn't have the media coverage exposing whatever warts and flaws they had.

That said, I think the blogging portion of the coverage has led to a greater appreciation of the game and the outcomes.  I don't mean those types that are negative about everything, that the sky is falling every time the home team doesn't win by ten.  I don't mean those types that make it their mission to try to stir up trouble, antipathy, and anything else they can to get page views.  I'm talking about your regular, run of the mill bloggers, the kind that make up the United Cardinal Bloggers, for example.

When I think about how the UCB covers things, I think about all the different viewpoints that are brought to the table about a single game or a stretch of games.  You can see things that other can't, and vice versa. The Diamond Dolls at Cardinal Diamond Diaries may find the silver lining in a bad loss.  Pip will show why things aren't that bad (or are worse) with the stats.  Mark at RetroSimba will give a historical perspective.  All of these put together means that the sum is greater than the parts.

Of course, I'm the kind of person who wants to read as much as they can about the last game and talk about it as much as possible as well.  Perhaps it does get tiring to some, and I know that when you read the same headline on two or three blogs, it can start to sound like an echo chamber.  However, I think that blogging is similar to fantasy baseball.  

Fantasy baseball is a great way to stir interest in the game.  You might watch Pittsburgh vs. Washington if you've got Ryan Zimmerman or Andrew McCutchen on your team, and anything that gets eyeballs on baseball is a good thing.  The same with blogging.  With blogs, you sometimes watch games looking for different perspectives to write about.  You might be looking for a subtext or a different layer to the game.  Or, if you are like me, writing about it the next day gives you the chance to organize your thoughts and understand what happened and what it meant.

Do some 10-2 games get over-analyzed and is it a bit harder to have an even keel with this kind of coverage?  Perhaps.  However, I'd rather live in a world with too much baseball talk than not enough or not at all.  This time of the year really emphasizes that, as the football talk drones on while you pan the Twitter and the websites for some nugget of baseball discussion.

Couple of links before I wrap up here.  First off, it's Albert Week over at Cards Diaspora.  I'm sure you thought you knew all the arguments for resigning Albert, but Hooks and the gang are always willing to prove that you haven't completely plumbed the depths of any topic.

Speaking of the big first baseman, he's got his own article in USA Today.  Hopefully he doesn't get a lot of feedback, because if he starts blogging no one will ever read here again.  Though we'd be glad to have him in the UCB!

The radio show will be hosted by yours truly tomorrow night.  We are going to spend a little time talking with James from Astros County, getting a feel for what our divisional rivals are doing this offseason as well as whether or not Lance Berkman is a good signing for someone.  Tune in and join us!

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Nice write. Also, I promoted you on my new CardinalsGM facebook page. Keep up the good work!

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