Gloucester Daily Times
---- — TALKING BASEBALL
Fans of the “Super 8” got their wish Monday when a baseball version of the elite high school tournament received final approval for the 2014 season.
The final vote was 7-6, extremely close, as there was a late push from the private schools to keep the system the way it stands.
A double-elimination Super 8 will be played at the elite facilities around the state, potentially including Fenway Park.
Initially, I love the concept. Let the best teams slug it out at the state’s top venues to try to generate some interest. In the meantime, the solid, public Division 1 teams will have a fair and honest chance to compete for a state championship.
One gripe, the Super 8 will be played in 9-inning games. If you are going with a double-elimination format, the games should most definitely be seven innings. The nine innings in a stretched-out format like this will most certainly tax pitching staffs.
TALKING BASEBALL II
Speaking of the seven/nine-inning debate, the Division 1 teams in the West have made those nine-inning marathons a thing of the past.
There is a move afoot in the North Sectional to change the Division 1 North sectional to seven-inning games as well, beginning next spring. A vote of the eight Division 1 coaches in the MVC (all but Tewksbury, Dracut and North Andover) yielded a 5-3 vote in favor of a move to seven innings.
The entire D1 North sectional vote was split right down the middle, so it appears the debate will continue.
—Compiled by Hector Longo