Start MLB Games at 5:20 PM

If the MLB games started at 5:30 PM, some fans would then have the double option of both arriving late ~ and leaving early, but most would now have the chance to be there when everything gets settled ~ and sometimes ~ in most dramatic ways.


Check out Curt Smith’s 10/31/18 column on six things MLB could do to help reverse the sharp 22% loss of viewer interest in the World Series since 2017.

In imperfect summary form here, Smith is saying that baseball could:

  1. Hire broadcasters who enliven the game;
  2. Develop a TV marketing plan that reaches young and other new fans;
  3. Restore TV camera intimacy (a much more artful subject);
  4. Cure the currently ill time-killer play review process;
  5. Quicken the pace of the game (our anthem of new old saws);
  6. Find a better start time for more attention to dramatic finish games.

Relative to Point Six, Smith referenced “Game Five of the 2017 Fall Classic—a jai alai of seven homers and four half-innings of three or more runs. Covering the Series since 1975, the Washington Post’s Thomas Doswell pronounced the Astros’ 13-12 victory over the Dodgers in Houston the ‘most insanely entertaining game’ he had seen. America might have liked it even more had the game ended before 1:37 a.m. Eastern Time.

“Almost midway through the score was tied at four, millions already in bed, not aware what lay ahead. Ultimately, Alex Bregman singled in the 10th inning, ending a five hour and 17-minute madhouse that mesmerized 23 million viewers. How many more would have marveled had the first pitch arced at 4:20 instead of 8:20 Eastern Time on Sunday night?

The Pecan Park Eagle votes on Point Six as the clearest issue suggested here by Curt Smith. Look! Kids are still the future of the game, even in an era which no longer bonds them to the game by their common life ground on their various neighborhood sandlots. If young people cannot hope to experience the lightning of last inning baseball drama, the game shall hold no hope of retaining any generation as deep fans in the future.

The solution begins with baseball now attempting to make sure that the  kids of today get to have a vicarious ballpark experience that provides the kind of thrill we once found for ourselves as the children of sweet sweat sandlot play. Without such, my fear is that the future of baseball is lost. Here are our initial suggestions for a first start on the road to recovery:

Our Klunky-Level Arguments for the 2-hour earlier start of all games that count:

  1. Start the Games at 5:20 PM ~ not 7:20 PM.
  2. Today’s 7:20 PM start fans are missing the end of games by leaving early due to school, work, or the desire to beat the traffic. ~ Why not miss the start of games and stay for the finish instead?
  3. People who like to leave early may still do so ~ but now they have the option to both arrive late and leave early!
  4. If you have to come late for the 5:20 PM start ~ you can still be there for the games that finish big much earlier!
  5. And the kids get to see a few walk-off finishes and maybe even the blue moon magic of a Game 5 from 2017!
  6. Do all the other things that Smith is suggesting and you won’t even have to miss the start of the game. Your fan group can watch it on their apps while you, the designated driver, take them out to the ballgame with a generous sum of peanut and Cracker Jack money in your wallet.



Bill McCurdy

Principal Writer, Editor, Publisher

The Pecan Park Eagle



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