For disappointed young fans, postseason is post-bedtime Late-game heroics come only in their dreams

Kids' corner

September 24, 1995|By Jamison Hensley | Jamison Hensley,CONTRIBUTING WRITER

Some of baseball's younger fans aren't pleased with the postseason format. And it has nothing to do with the addition of wild cards.

For the past several years, all postseason games have been at night. This year, no game will start before 7 p.m., and more than half will begin after 8 p.m.

A majority of the 30 younger fans interviewed said the starting times hurt them the most.

"It's like they don't think of us," said Jason Burk, 11, of Lutherville. "Maybe if they played just one or two [games during the day], we could see an entire game."

The first three games of the American and National League divisional series will start at 8:07 p.m. and probably won't end before 11 p.m.

"When they start at that time, I will be lucky to see seven innings at the most," said Marcus Devlin, 11, of Owings Mills. "I might go to bed with one team winning and wake up and find that they lost."

In the past, baseball scheduled several postseason day games.

"I remember when I was a kid growing up and got to see entire games because they were played during the day," said Tony Marconi, 35, who has two sons. "I let my kids stay up to watch the World Series, only because it's the World Series. It's a shame that some kids won't be able to watch it because it's past their bedtime."

And some fans wished the Orioles would not schedule most of their games at night.

This year, only 21 games of their 72 home games started before 7:35 p.m., 18 of which were played in the afternoon. In 1994, 29 of the Orioles' 81 scheduled home games started earlier than 7:35 p.m.

The Orioles are one of only four American League teams to schedule a majority of their home games after 7:30 p.m.

"I wish they started earlier," said Ben Cavanaugh, 12, of Eldersburg. "It's hard when the games go on so late."

Younger fans suggested that the Orioles play Saturday games at 1:35 p.m. and weekday games at 7 p.m.

"It's not that bad during the summer," Devlin said. "But when school starts, it's pretty tough. I have to beg my parents to stay up late."

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