At Spring Training baseball games, the game itself is almost secondary. Wins and losses don't matter, strategy is non-existant, and most fans haven't heard of every player on the field after the fifth inning. On Tuesday, the Red Sox tried to add a new sense of awareness to their game with the Marlins by announcing each pitch and the count over the public address system. You can see why this would drive people insane, right?
Here's some of the logic behind the change, according to Dr. Charles Steinberg.
“It’s something we vigorously debated for more than a year in the offices of Boston. And rather than debate it in the abstract, we’re going to use the spring training testing ground to see if there’s any traction. The idea being that everything about a baseball game, particularly in recent years, seems to focus on the count, the difference between 2-0 and hitting 1-2, and in a way that imposed gently, brings people closer to the game. The announcer will update the count after each pitch.”
Here's the elephant in the room for Steinberg's logic – there are mutliple scoreboards around the park with the count listed on it. If a fan wants to know the count, they simply need to move their eyes instead of having the pitch result and count blared over the PA system every 30 seconds. What would happen in a 12 pitch at bat with multiple foul balls? Would we hear "3-2" six times before someone calmly walked up to the press box and took a bat to the audio equipment?
There is such a thing as having good intentions and still trying to fix a problem that doesn't exist, and that's exactly what is happening in Fort Myers. It's admirable for the Red Sox to want to keep their fans aware of the current game situation, but doing it in this way is enough to drive someone completely insane.