“In ‘America’s Pastime,’ Baseball Players Pass a Lot of Time” is the headline in yesterday’s Wall Street Journal.


Doing research a dull man would love to do, the newspaper went to three baseball games with a stopwatch. The results — action time versus downtime:

•  10% action time — 17 minutes and 58 seconds

•  90% downtime — 2 hours and 58 seconds

 baseball boring

What happens, if anything, during the downtime? A few examples:

•  Pitcher walking around to pick up the rosin bag and using it

•  Batter praticing swings

•  Batter unsstrapping and restrapping their gloves

•  Cleaning cleats

•  Adjusting sleeves

•  Adjusting helmets

•  Injury timeout

•  Manager arguing with umpires

Seventy million people watch baseball games every year. They’re hoping to see excitement — like home runs. There’s only one thing they’re certain to see: grown men standing in a field doing nothing most of the time.

Advertisers, however, love the downtime.

Baseball is sometimes called “the thinking man’s game.” Because there’s so much spare time to think?

Football is even more boring? Apparently that’s the case according to an earlier WSJ article. Eleven minutes of action time, seven minutes less than baseball.

How does this compare to cricket? Americans watching cricket when visiting England (or India) frequently say cricket is boring. But are these fair comments compared leading sports back home?



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