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Indians Indians Archive View from the Porch's 1,000 Reasons Why I Won't Watch the MLB Playoffs
Written by Adam Burke

Adam Burke

HRPorchViewI keep hearing all this talk about how this is the greatest time of the year for sports. Yeah, maybe if you live in New York, Tampa, Texas, Detroit, Philly, Phoenix, St. Louis, or Milwaukee. Considering that I don’t, it’s just the start of another weekend on the gridiron with college football and the NFL. I guess hockey season’s starting soon. That’s pretty good for me, but most people don’t really care.

Before I go through my laundry list of reasons why I won’t watch the MLB Playoffs, I will admit that I did enjoy the final night of the regular season on Wednesday. There’s something incredibly gratifying and exciting about Boston’s epic failure. The way it happened could not have been scripted and to see biggest Summer’s Eve of the bunch Jonathan Papelbon blow the save while biggest disappointment of the season Carl Crawford misplayed a ball he might catch in his sleep was fun.

It will be the last baseball game I pay attention to until March when the Indians begin Spring Training. To me, watching postseason baseball would be like watching your kid brother open his Christmas present and get exactly what he wants while you get tube socks and a boomerang. Call me cold, cynical, or whatever you want, but I find no satisfaction in someone else’s joy. Every year in baseball, there is a winner. For the last 63, it hasn’t been us.

With that, I invite you to read my 1,000 reasons why I will not watch postseason baseball.

mc_buckReasons #1-225: Joe Buck and Tim McCarver. These two insufferable shills would make the birth of your firstborn an event that you never want to live through again if they did play-by-play for it. Joe Buck commentates with the excitement level of Masterpiece Theater on PBS. Tim McCarver is the master of obvious comments. He’s one step away from saying “The team with the lead to end the game will win.” Of course, he’s probably already said that, but I wouldn’t know because the Indians are almost never on FOX with that broadcast team and have made the playoffs once in the last 10 seasons.

I still hate Joe Buck for his downtrodden “Indians win.” after Hafner’s walk-off knock in Game 2 of the ALDS in 2007. Either somebody was mercilessly being his dog in the broadcast booth or he was told to remove his lips from A-Rod’s junk. Tim McCarver probably had to be restrained from throwing things around in the background.

I’d rather listen to cat claws scratching a chalkboard with a series of megaphones hanging off of it than those two.

Reason #226: Start times ending in 7. 5:37, 8:37, 6:17. What the hell is the point in saving that extra two minutes? If it’s to listen to some talentless hack melancholically sing the national anthem like we’re attending a giant funeral, I’m not interested. Some national anthem singers are terrific. Those are the ones who are done in time for the game to start promptly.

danecookReasons #227-230: My dislike for the playoff baseball commercials. Since I’ve tried to erase our 2007 collapse from my memory, all I can remember is joke stealer Dane Cook and his garbage “There’s only one October!” commercial. Really? You couldn’t get more talent than Dane Cook to be the face of playoff baseball advertising. This year, it’s Jason Bateman. I’m guessing The Situation declined? Maybe they couldn’t secure what’s left of Danny DeVito’s career.

Up until seeing The Change-Up this year, I had no idea who Jason Bateman is. After seeing the movie, I don’t know what his appeal is.

Reason #231: Stupid celebrity appearances that are put on TV for no good reason. I’m really thrilled that Dom DeLuise is sitting out in the cheap seats and that Vince Vaughn is focusing on not being funny anymore long enough to sit field box. Unless some D-list actor is in attendance rolling out the tarp or raking the infield because no one will hire them for a role anymore, I don’t care.

Reasons #232-234: Promos for bad FOX and TBS shows. FOX will hang its hat on promoting Sunday football coverage and their Sunday night cartoons. Token graphics will pop up for their weeknight shows, but they know full well that they’re finishing behind one of the other three major networks every night of the week.

I hate Conan O’Brien. I’m pretty sure Dan Rather is funnier than Conan. His delivery, his annoying mannerisms, and aloof demeanor don’t register with me. They’ll shove him down the viewer’s throat on TBS, along with Tyler Perry ads featuring jokes that are lost on 85% of white people.

bud-seligReasons #235-550: I will not support what is wrong with Major League Baseball. Every now and then a good story like the 2007 Indians and Rockies or 2009 Rays shows some promise for small market teams, but in the end, they get squashed by the bigger market franchises. If the Indians are involved in the postseason, it’s different. Clearly, I will support them 100%. But, when they aren’t, the hell with it.

I keep seeing this stat about how 7 of the 9 top payrolls in baseball are home for October. OK, sure, but 3 of the bottom 15 are in the playoffs. That means in the top half of payroll is 62.5% of the playoff teams. Baseball economics are still irreparably broken. It shows damn near every postseason. Most of the teams in the bottom half of payroll did not have a chance.

It’s really hard for me to be excited for the MLB Postseason when there’s maybe one good story per year. This year is a little different with three pretty good stories, especially the Rays, but it isn’t enough. Two playoff teams, St. Louis and Milwaukee, face losing one of their most talented offensive players after these playoffs. For the sake of the fans in those two cities, I hope they have good, long runs.

Safe to say that the highest payroll teams who fell short will simply throw more money at the problem next year. Real fair system.

Reasons #551-600: There’s more to watch than in the summer. The return of the fall shows, the sitcoms and the dramas. The premium cable shows like Dexter and Boardwalk Empire. If the Indians aren’t playing, I’m not going out of my way to watch baseball.

My fiancé has already endured six months of me putting baseball above what she wants to watch. Time for me to take a step back and give the DVR a break. I’d rather laugh at The Big Bang Theory and How I Met Your Mother than mindlessly watch two teams I don’t care about. I hope someone beats the Yankees and the Tigers. I’m not going to watch either of them celebrate and I’ll applaud their demise without watching it.

Reason #601: I’m out of baseball mode. I’ve spent six months watching baseball almost every night. I’m burned out. By November, I’ll be ready to go again. But, for now, like the Indians, I’m ready to take a step back and relax. It’s football season now. I still follow Indians news. I still look over statistics. I still watch highlights and listen to Tom Hamilton’s memorable calls. I just watch something else at night and worry more about my fantasy football team and my gambling addiction.

Reason #602-604: One of the other teams from the Central is playing. The reason this is only three reasons is because the Royals are never the team from the Central. No incentive for me to watch the Tigers, White Sox, or Twins playing in the spot I want the Indians to be in. Remember the Christmas analogy further up? About how I feel. I’ve already made it clear how I feel about the Central Division. No different come October.

Reason #605: The games take too damn long. Whether it’s due to what teams are playing or just because of the extended commercial breaks, these games take forever. The majority of them are close and managers have to micro-manage every late inning situation. I could probably run a half marathon in the time it takes to play one MLB playoff game. I’d say I’d average an 11 minute mile for three or four miles to start and progressively go downhill from there.

Reasons #606-706: Joe Buck and Tim McCarver. See above.

Reason #707: I turn on WTAM 1100 at 7 pm and don’t hear Tom Hamilton. It’s depressing.

Reason #708: The weather sucks. It just no longer feels like baseball season. The skies are endlessly grey, the temperatures are steadily dropping, and snow will start popping up in 7-day forecasts.

valverdedoucheReason #709-719: The Yankees-Tigers matchup: There is no winner for me, I can’t stand Jim Leyland, Joe Girardi is a prick, Derek Jeter’s lucky relay in Oakland like 15 years ago will be shown 35 times, CC Sabathia isn’t scared to death of postseason starts anymore, Jhonny Peralta is in the playoffs, Miguel Cabrera’s smirk, Victor is still clutch and it pains me to see him do it in a Tigers uniform, Minka Kelly won’t be shown, and Jose Valverde’s antics on every pitch make me want to repeatedly punch women and stray dogs.

Reason #720: Let’s expand on Jose Valverde. Is there anything about this assclown worth rooting for? His antics give the impression that every save wins him the World Series. I’ve seen more genuine acting in softcore adult movies. Screw this guy. I hope he never wins anything.

Reason #721: Speaking of guys I can’t stand, would anybody be happy for Jhonny Peralta to win in the postseason? The only thing consistent about his game in Cleveland was his apathy. He’s not a winning player. To see him have playoff success would anger me based on his lack of heart here.

Reasons #722-999: What’s the point? Honestly. As an Indians fan, which I am above being a sports fan, why do I want to watch somebody celebrate? Every year, in every sport, I envision the Indians being at the top of that mountain. I don’t need to see it year in and year out. My desire to be downtown lining Euclid Avenue or East 9th or whatever street our parade route would go down doesn’t go up or down based on the team that wins the World Series. I don’t care if the Tigers add a World Series to their city’s title resume covered with Red Wings’ Stanley Cups and a couple Pistons NBA titles.

I don’t care if New York buys another championship. Fix the economics of baseball. The Yankees should win. They pay almost $1,000,000 more per player than any other team in baseball.

I don’t care if Texas wins a World Series. Or Milwaukee. Or Arizona gets another one in their short history. Doesn’t matter to me if Philadelphia’s pitching first philosophy nets their $173M payroll another title.

I see no reason to watch. You can school me on how the games hinge on every pitch. You can tell me over and over how every at bat is pressure-filled and action packed. How random guys like Cody Ross get to make their name in the playoffs.

None of it appeals to me. If that keeps me from being a baseball fan, whatever. I’m a fan of my team above the game. Even when the Indians were in it in 2007, I didn’t watch any game that involved two teams not named the Indians.

For me, it’s hockey and football season once game #162 is in the books and the Indians haven’t qualified for the playoffs.

Reason #1000: Joe Buck. Seriously. This guy is awful. I’d rather hear his father do the games.

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