We don’t yet have the full Collective Bargaining Agreement to peruse – the players and owners struck a deal late last night – but little details are trickling out here and there.
For one example, remember the scourge of the All-Star Game, with its fan-voted starters and every-team-gets-a-player requirement, determining home field advantage in the World Series?
Well, it’s over.
Originally conceived by former Commissioner Bud Selig as a way to make the All-Star Game “mean something” after the 2002 edition ended in a tie, the winning league of the All-Star Game has received home field advantage in that year’s World Series since 2003.
It was kind of understandable at first, but it started to feel extremely silly in the last, say, 10 years. Why should the worse team get home field advantage in the most important series because of an exhibition game played by totally different players three months before?
The AP reports that it’s all done now, and instead, the pennant winner with the best regular season record will get home field advantage.
I wouldn’t change a thing about the 2016 World Series – because obviously – but it’s interesting to think that, had this change been in place a year earlier, things could have been totally different (for better or worse?). Maybe the Cubs win it in Chicago. Or maybe they don’t win it at all (the Cubs got four games of Kyle Schwarber this way, and also won three out of four in Cleveland). We’ll never know. But the Cubs’ championship now officially came in the final year that they could have had the best record, but did not receive home field advantage.
We’ll be getting into other CBA changes throughout the day (and, really, in the coming weeks and months – the implications of these things often take a while to really thoughtfully consider).