June 16, 2010; Kansas City, MO, USA; MLB commissioner Bud Selig announces that Kansas City has been selected to host the 2012 All Star Game at Kauffman Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-US PRESSWIRE

Radical Baseball: They're Conferences, Not Leagues!

Major League Baseball in wikipedia:

the National League and the American League … merged in 2000 into a single MLB organization led by the Commissioner of Baseball after 100 years as separate legal entities. (Source): “Year In Review : 2000 National League”. www.baseball-almanac.com. Retrieved 2008-09-05.

The two leagues were once totally separate rival corporate entities, but that distinction has all but disappeared … This difference in rules (DH) between leagues is unique to MLB; the other sports leagues of the US including the NFL, NBA, NHL each have all teams playing under the same rules.

WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 19, 2011 Merger: AL and NL merged years ago. How come no one noticed?

If the merger between the once independent American and National Leagues had been treated as such then the new organization, MLB, Inc., might not have made such absurd decisions about organizing the new single league.

My friend Cliff first referred to them as the American and National conferences a couple of years ago.  I’ve picked up on that.  It’s refreshing to make that change in thinking.  It helps put things into perspective.

The only thing that suggests that they are still separate leagues is that they continue to have a different rule: the designated hitter (DH) is used in the American conference but not in the National conference.

1. There is one commissioner, not two.

2. There is one group of umpires, not two.

3. Teams in an independent league do not play regular season games against teams in another independent league.  Did the NBA play regular season games against the ABA before the merger in 1976?  No.  Did the NFL play regular season games against the AFL before the merger in 1970?  No, just the four Super Bowls, which were an extra game played between the NFL and AFL champions; this was like the old World Series; in both cases the old name persists even though it has been replaced by a post season tournament.

4. Do independent leagues move teams from one league to another?  No.  MLB moved Milwaukee from the American conference to the National conference.  It is about to move Houston from the National conference to the American conference in 2013.

MONDAY, JUNE 11, 2012 Major Baseball League: a new phrase is coined.

Major League Baseball (MLB) should change its name to Major Baseball League (MBL). Maybe I’ll do it for them. Ladies and Gentlemen, now introducing the already existing Major Baseball League with its American and National conferences! Get used to it…

In case it is not obvious enough the intent of this name change is to drive home the point yet again that the old American and National Leagues merged into one league known as Major.


You can follow the personal baseball blog of Kenneth Matinale here: Radical Baseball

Tags: Major Baseball League MBL MLB

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