Monday, May 07, 2007

MLB Draft to be Televised

So four hours of the draft are going to be on ESPN2 this year. A few years ago, I thought this would be a pretty cool thing. Now, I'm not so sure. The increased exposure will be good for the league, as it will help casual fans understand more about their favorite team's farm system, but who's going to sit through one hour of this, let alone four?

Each team has a five minute time-limit in the first round, which will make it quicker than the NFL draft (this is a good thing), but the entertainment value of other drafts comes from draft-day trades, which you obviously can't have in baseball. Also, nobody really follows college baseball, so when these guys get selected, there are going to be viewers all over the country letting out a collective "who?" after every pick.

It's a good place to start, I suppose, but I don't know if this really can be a "successful" venture, however you want to define that, without some drastic changes to the draft format, and those may do more harm than good. I hope this turn of events leads to more analysis of compensatory picks, so that Karl Ravech will have to explain things to America like "the Mariners don't have a first-rounder this year; they forfeited it to sign Greg Colbrunn" (yes, that was years ago, but it still blows my mind). Maybe an extra level of accountability will serve some of these GMs well. However, I fear that it will lead to John Kruk saying stuff like "the Royals could really use a shortstop, I don't know why they took a pitcher there."


Ross said...

I think it's a good thing. While there will be a lot of "who's that", they can tell us so we can get excited about the new players our favorite organization just brought in.

As far as "entertainment value", it's probably not very high, but what does on ESPN2?

Warren said...

In years past, the draft has gone really fast, especially when you're used to the NFL. So I wonder if they're going to use anything close to 5 minutes per pick, at least in the first round.

Sully said...

That's the thing - you can't trade the picks, so you should have a pretty good idea of who's going to be available when you pick. There's no way it should take you five minutes. I wonder if they'll stretch it out just so the ESPN "personalities" can "analyze" the picks. That would blow.