I haven’t revisited this issue in a long time, so let me start with my original proposition that I have adhered to for a long time previous: The DH is a silly concept, whose value to baseball is solely to allow aging sluggers an opportunity to continue mashing and maybe break a few records. But, I accept the DH and actually like the difference between leagues, enabling me to have yet another reason to hate the “Anaheim” Angels versus my beloved Blue Crew.
Suddenly, I’m revisiting my prior opinion, and I’m not liking it. I’m changing my mind (not on the hating the Angels thing, mind you).
Baseball is a different game than it was forty years ago. We have specialist-ballplayers, and the focus of baseball training is on singularly making a player stronger by focusing on what matters.
In the case of the pitcher, he will pitch. He won’t spend time developing in the batting cage because it is much less important to the big picture.
In the case of the hitter… well, how often do you think Ryan Braun or Prince Fielder were working on their bunting when in the minors?
The point, Patrick, that you made that slapped some reality into me was this: “so the NL wonders why everyone else does not recognize that the double switch is sufficient justification for the DH rule.”
I never gave this a lot of credence… until now. And, you’re right. The double switch just has a “bush league” feel to it when you think about it… almost like this is the kind of rule we would find in a t-ball game being played by hapless five-year olds (so, the article gets even more interesting when you point out that even t-ball goes with the DH).
On the fantasy level, I like the idea of putting all pitchers on a level playing field.
So, in the end, I’m flip-flopping. And, even worse, I’m agreeing with a Steinbrenner. Fortunately, Hank (and George) have nothing to do with the “Anaheim” Angels, so my integrity is salvaged, albeit only partially.