I keep hearing idea after idea on how to speed up baseball under the theory that the length of the games is the cause for the trouble. Nobody seems to want to admit that in a game without a clock, every time you expand a league by a team you add 10 pitchers and 15 batters who would not have made the majors before. double the number of teams and suddenly you have longer innings as the best batters tee off sub par pitching with a few games where the 16 pitchers who would have been aces in 1959 pitch seven strong innings.
If you really want to speed up the game, raise the mound back to where it was in 1968 and the amount of time it takes for a team to get the 27 outs needed to win will drop like a rock along with offensive numbers.
The reality is the drop in popularity of baseball is cultural. It doesn’t have the violence of football or hockey, the speed of hockey and basketball or the trash talk of basketball or football. What is has is strategy, skill and a combination of man to man confrontations and a level of team and individual skill that has to be maintained until the last out as opposed to until you can run the clock out.
Alas we no longer have a society that has the appreciation for these things or the patience for them.
So by all means speed up the game if you want, but the most effective way to do it is raising the mound, and if there are fewer Home Runs…then so be it.