Is the Designated Hitter coming to the National League?

No, the NL will not get the DH anytime soon.  They are using it in NL vs. NL spring training contests this year to allow pitchers to focus on pitching.  But the pitchers will be in the nine-hole on opening day in the National League with the AL doing what they have done since 1973.

National League fans are the type of fans that just won’t accept it.  Take it from an NL fan, a New York Mets fan since 1968.  Sacrifice bunt and suicide squeeze strategy when pitchers bat.  Having to make a decision to pull a pitcher he is pitching a good game, you are down 1-0, and you just need a pinch hitter’s bat to get it done on the diamond.  When the pitcher is one of the first three due up next inning and you try to stretch a tiring pitcher to finish the inning so you can pinch hit without wasting another pitcher.  National League baseball is the last chess game in organized baseball.  National League fans are the type of fans that don’t just sit in a LA-Z-BOY recliner, pour another beer, and wait for the next long ball, like those AL rooters.  We are pensive and arm-chair manage and take the game seriously.  We are a different breed of fan!  We are the Senior Circuit, the first organized league established in the nations centennial year in 1876.  Just like my home state of Connecticut does not need to sell liquor on Sunday—you can stock up on Saturday.  We NL fans are fans of the grand old game, not the disco era hipped up version.  The issue on the table right now is the expanded interleague play beginning in 2013 with the Houston Astros being realigned into the AL West for a 15-15 balance.  This will mean instead of an interleague break in two parts of the season, the norm will be fourteen intra-league games and one NL vs. AL matchup; requiring each team play approximately thirty interleague games to ensure the season is completed in twenty-six weeks.

The American League will abolish their DH and hit pitchers and restore baseball to pre-1973 status at least with respect to the lineup card, before the NL gets a DH.  Some say the Players’ Association will never allow it.  I got news for you, the Players’ Association does not care about designated hitters; their only vested interest is that full time AL DHs are not given pink slips as they are represented by this union the same as position players and there would be hell to pay.  But the PA does not care if these [saved jobs] are used as DHs or in some other role.  The PA would be happier if the DH was abolished and the pre-September regular season rosters were expanded from 25 to 26 players, creating thirty more jobs in MLB.  Odds are, this is the way it will go.  The only reason the DH has lasted this long is because with the abolition of the league presidents and league offices, and interleague play which will be expanded upon next season, the DH is all that is left distinguishing the leagues.  But do the leagues really have to be distinguished?  In the NFL the NFC and AFC play by the same rules.  So do the conferences in the NBA and NHL.  Without separate league offices and league presidents, the bridge is already burned; effectively you have on league, MLB with two conferences that call themselves leagues in title to preserve the tradition.  And why should teams in all leagues have to play by different rules when they are the visiting team in an interleague matchup?  Pitchers hitting in both leagues is the way to go.  When it is the pitcher’s turn at bat, decision time—what do you think the field manager is being paid to do?  This the way the Founding Fathers of Baseball intended the game to be played.  Now let’s hit the pitchers in both leagues!

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