Monday, February 15, 2010
The 2015 All-Star Game in ... Cooperstown?
The NHL and now the NBA have played before gigantic, football-sized crowds, leading Big League Stew's 'Duk to wonder about baseball. Bigger? Well, MLB's already played a game in the Coliseum, and anyway baseball teams already play to fairly large crowds. So why not go small?
Now, I'll admit that choice of venue is on the list of settings that Bud Selig doesn't need to toggle when it comes to the annual meeting of the AL and NL. The list of franchises wanting to host the game will never end -- Jeffrey Loria just thrust his Marlins to the front of the line for the 2015 contest -- and the difference between baseball's unique ballparks is enough that a change of pace isn't necessary for a jolt of energy.
But for the sake of imagination, let's say that MLB wanted to take a one-year respite from the regular rotation and do something different to generate excitement and grab headlines. Wouldn't Doubleday Field in Cooperstown be the place to do it? Or maybe the Field of Dreams in Dyersville, Iowa?
Wow. This is such a wonderful idea that I'm shocked nobody's thought of it before (nobody that I know about, anyway).
But of course it's also impossible.
For one thing, Selig doesn't do anything without the acquiescence of a significant majority of his employers, and I just can't see even a dozen of them agreeing to something that will delay the eventual hosting of an All-Star Game -- with all the attendant revenues -- for many of them.
And for another, I'm guessing that Cooperstown is already maxed out, infrastructure-wise, by Hall of Fame weekend every summer. Could the little town really survive an All-Star weekend? And I believe it would have to be a weekend, because Doubleday Field doesn't have lights. Given the relatively poor quality of temporary lighting, I think they'd have to consider playing on a Saturday afternoon, which would be in keeping with the spirit of the event ... but again would cost the owners some money (because they would have to replace three weekend games with three weeknight games).
It's fun to think about, but I'm afraid that's as far as we'll ever get.