By Chase Hensing
In 1850 baseball was introduced as the first professional sport in the United States. It then quickly spread from the United States to the rest of the world by the start of the 20th century, becoming an international sport. It continued to grow throughout the years and was the most popular sport up until the late 90’s. However at the moment baseball is at an all time low, not as many people want to watch or even play it. One question that arises is why less people are interested in baseball in the latest generations?
One of the biggest reasons that kids in today do not enjoy baseball as much is because their attention spans have shortened. This can be seen with the growth of the sports basketball, and football, which are America’s two most popular sports at the moment and have been for the past few decades. Basketball is very fast paced due to the players constantly running up and down the court. Football is more enticing because there is a lot of contact every play and people like to see things happening consistently throughout the game. Glenelg Sophomore Kevin Miller Says “Baseball is definitely the most boring sport to me. But my dad sits at home almost every night during the season and watches the Nationals. It is so much easier for me to sit down and watch a two hour basketball game where there is action nonstop then to watch a three hour baseball game where not a whole lot happens.” It is clear to see that the minds of kids have changed over time, but it is important to look at why things actually changed.
When baseball was America’s favorite sport there wasn’t nearly as much technology. This lack of technology led to a society who was more patient and more able to entertain themselves with what we would call “less exciting activities”. However when you look at our current society it can be expected that baseball would be a less attractive sport then others. We have loads of technology around us at all times and doing our everyday tasks for us very quickly, meaning we have become less patient than previous generations and won’t appreciate baseball like others have. Glenelg Sophomore Dylan Jock says “My phone is a huge part of my life, it's the last thing I use at night and first in the morning. I do everything on it from sending messages with friends, school work, or even watching videos. My parents always tell me they never had things like that.” This is much different than how children used to be raised. We have things such as TV’s, computers, and phones that can entertain us with tons of different things at any time and it gets done in seconds. This eventually leads to children becoming less patient and they develop a constant need for entertainment. That might be why nowadays as a society we are more attracted to the fast paced and action packed sports, but previous generations were able to sit down and watch entire baseball games and enjoy it. Glenelg Sophomore Braeden Sumpter said “I play baseball and I understand why people can hate it. I don’t enjoy sitting down and watching it either, but I think it is the most fun sport to play because of the adrenaline that hits me when I get a hit or I’m about to make a play. It just isn’t for everyone.” Believe it or not, Braeden Sumpter isn’t the only baseball player that thinks the game can be boring when you aren’t playing, even professional players have been quoted saying they dislike it.
Washington Nationals Third Baseman Anthony Rendon has been quoted numerous times saying that the sport is “long and boring”. Other stars of the game such as Manny Machado, Clayton Kershaw, and Justin Verlander have come out saying even they get bored of it sometimes. On top of this, MLB attendance rates in 2018 hit its lowest point since 2003. Glenelg Sophomore TJ Ringer said, “I think it is very weird that even professional baseball players find it hard to sit through a game. I don’t think that any other professional athlete would say that about their sport.” It is hard to say what will happen with baseball in the future but it is clear that the sport has surely regressed in the past few decades. If these trends continue do you think that America will eventually leave baseball in the past?