Brendan. You new age, Enya-loving, everyone-gets-a-trophy hipster. Interleague play is a gimmick. A dumb gimmick. And I am firmly opposed to all gimmicks from a new class on Saved by the Bell to 3D movies.
Baseball is built on tradition. Longstanding tradition. Tradition is the one thing that sets baseball apart from all the other major professional sports in this country. The NFL, NBA, and NHL chase every gimmick (like a blue puck) fundamentally altering play and making it impossible to compare different eras of the game. They run their leagues like they are landing a F-16 in Top Gun on old school Nintendo; by making short-sighted changes to address an immediate problem without considering the long-term effect.
Meanwhile, MLB took the long view, until Bud pillaged and conquered the Commissioner’s office. In his haste to make sure the Yankees and Mets and Cubs and White Sox play every summer, he created a rule that gives us Rays-Brewers. Awesome! Outside of the traditional rivalries, interleague play is just silly.
And wait. There’s more! In my mind, baseball is a game of conversation. Its leisurely pace and long season allow fans to have countless inane debates about the next pitch, or the next game. Among those debates were hypothetical matchups between the leagues. AND. THEY. WERE. AWESOME. But, now, there is no reason to engage in those debates because the teams play meaningless series’ in the middle of the summer.
In the end, interleague play seriously undermines two of the greatest things about baseball just to sell a few more tickets at ballparks in two cities. Well that makes a ton of sense. Right?