MLB.tv & Blackouts

One of the serious drawbacks of no longer being a cable tv subscriber is that I cannot watch local sports. For the most part, it is the lack of baseball that gets to me. It seems like it was only a few years ago that baseball games were broadcast locally. Those days are definitely gone. Most of the Red Sox games are now only broadcast on the cable channel NESN. This means I cannot watch Red Sox games.
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Sounds of the Game

This evening (Thursday - October 26th) I am sitting here watching the 2nd game of the 2007 World Series and trying tolerate another Fox broadcast. I cannot help but wonder why anyone at Fox would think it to be a good idea to skip a batter or two so that they can show their "Sounds of the Game" segments.

If Fox didn't cram ads into every free second of the game, they would have time to show segments like this without doing so at the cost of the viewers who are just trying to watch the game. If they are going to keep up with the massive number of ads, they should probably look at losing these extra audio/video "features".

Some one of these years, I wish that the MLB would offer a pay-per-view option for the playoffs where viewers could pay for a broadcast with their hometown announcers calling the playoff games. I would happily pay to hear the NESN folks calling the ALDS, ALCS, and World Series games. And I have to say that I would still order the pay-per-view even if my hometown team (Red Sox) were not playing in the championships.

Major League Baseball Rules Changes

Turns out that there are a few changes to the MLB rules for the 2007 season.

This one struck me a pretty interesting:
"With no runners on, a pitcher will be required to pitch within 12 seconds, the timing starting when the pitcher is in possession of the ball and the batter is in the batter's box, alert to the pitcher."

Amongst other things, it looks like they are try speed up the game a little.