Various Factors Contributing To Long World Series Games
The Astros' win over the Nationals in Game 5 of the World Series lasted 3 hours, 19 minutes, which was 24 minutes less than the previous shortest game in the series (THE DAILY). Last night's game came after Games 1-4 averaged 3 hours, 54 minutes, and the AP's Ben Walker noted there are reasons for the length, including the "break between half-innings" lasting 2 minutes, 55 seconds, "up from 2:05 for most regular-season games." Also, hitters "want more time outside the batter's box to get steady" and the relievers "need an extra moment or two to compose themselves." Plus, there are "non-stop pitching changes" (AP, 10/27). In Boston, Dan Shaughnessy writes the World Series has been a "tepid, mildly entertaining event," in part because the games "take too darn long." Two of them "ended after midnight" on the East Coast (BOSTON GLOBE, 10/28).
LONGER & LONGER: The NATIONAL POST's Scott Stinson writes of the World Series, "Good heavens these games are long. It is a crisis." Game 3 was 4 hours, 3 minutes, marking the first time in World Series history that a nine-inning game with five runs or fewer "took four-plus hours to complete." The average time between pitches during Game 3 was "almost 24 seconds, an increase of about two seconds from the regular-season average" (NATIONAL POST, 10/28). The GLOBE & MAIL's Cathal Kelly notes the World Series through five games is "averaging just less than four hours" per contest. A lot of "necessary things in life take at least four hours," but "none of them are considered entertainment." MLB is "no longer entertaining people," it is "taking them hostage in front of the television." The culture of baseball has "morphed from something fun, meant to be done in a relative hurry, to something incredibly important that takes forever by design" (GLOBE & MAIL, 10/28).