Kickball in the City

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Time for a change?

While my company's computer system is down I got to wondering about last night's Game 6 NLCS game between the Mets and Cardinals. The back and forth in the series has been great. It's a true test of endurance. Football is by far king of sports, but the Super Bowl and it's playoffs lack the coolness and inherent fairness of a playoff series. After all, a few bad plays in a football playoff game, and you're done. Is this really the best way to show who the best team is? I don't think so.

All the kickball leagues I play in are run the in much the same way. Usually there is a day long marathon of games which are all "one and done". You lose, you're gone, see you at the bar. For the most part, I agree with anything that can hasten the move to the bar but I don't think I do in this case. Maybe a playoff series would be better.

Series v Beer? I love them both, Beer will wait for me

In all of the leagues I play in every team makes the playoffs. This usually means 12 or 16 teams, so I realize that having even a three game series for each round is not feasible. So I propose having a playoff series, best of three, for the championship only. Most kickball games don't exceed one hour, so you could easily fit the entire series in the time it takes to watch one baseball or football game.

This would give a better idea of who the most deserving champion is, I believe. I have seen some "World Kickball Champions" crowned because someone mishandled one bunt. Or a "Champion of the Kickball Universe" named because the pitcher was on. But what if he had to throw three games in a row? Would he be as good? Would someone else get a chance to shine? I don't know but it sure seems like a better way to crown a champ than basing it on an errant throw.

After all, Mookie Wilson's grounder in '86 happened in Game 6, so the Red Sox still had a chance. And even though they did lose the series, at least it all didn't come down to that one play. Maybe the kickball powers that be should consider that and change their format.

Bill Buckner, the patron saint of the kickball playoff series


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