Mark Edwards' In My Opinion: A suggestion for how to make Winter Games better
by Mark Edwards
Feb 14, 2014 | 907 views |  0 comments | 26 26 recommendations | email to a friend | print
United States' Bode Miller has a rough day at the Olympics. (AP Photo/Gero Breloer)
United States' Bode Miller has a rough day at the Olympics. (AP Photo/Gero Breloer)
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Here’s a small suggestion for the Olympics from an American from the South: Add baseball and softball to the Winter Olympics.

Yes, those sports are played in the spring, summer and fall, but if the Summer Olympics can host basketball, then why can’t the Winter Games have baseball and softball?

Both got tossed from the Summer Games, so they’ve got no home. And – again, speaking as an American from the South – the Winter Olympics could use some sports that people around here actually play.

I’m sorry, but I don’t ski. Or skate. Or curl. Or bobsled. Or snowboard. Especially snowboarding. Those all are fine sports, but they just aren’t on my must-see list. I like hockey, but my knowledge base just isn’t that deep.

Certainly, the Olympics are about a whole lot more than what somebody in the Southern United States wants to see. But softball and baseball wouldn’t be any less fun for spectators than, say, the skeleton, which is a real Olympic sport. It also would eliminate a problem for overseers of the Summer Games.

Both sports were dismissed from those Olympics under controversy. The United States dominates the softball, which people didn’t like, and in baseball, the major leagues refused to allow their star players to abandon their teams during the season to go play a bunch of glorified exhibitions. People didn’t like that, either.

Basketball has the same issue, which is why it’s part of the Summer Games. Taking off for the Olympics doesn’t ruin anybody’s season.

Adding baseball and softball to the winter roster wouldn’t damage their season, either. If there are no baseball and softball stadiums at the host city, that shouldn’t be a problem. After all, do you think hosts already have facilities for sports such as the luge and the bobsled? They have to build them. So, why not build an indoor facility for baseball and softball?

And as American engineers have proven, it isn’t exceptionally hard to modify a baseball stadium into something else for another sport. It wouldn’t have to go to waste once the Olympics leave town.

So, please, give us baseball and softball. And while you're at it, how about adding stock-car racing and American football?

Contact Anniston Star Sports Editor Mark Edwards at medwards@annistonstar.com. Twitter: @MarkSportsStar.
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