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It’s hard to define a great baseball season. You know it when you see one.

We are witnessing one of the best in 2023.

We’ve seen Shohei Ohtani’s brilliance in the dual threat; the electricity produced by Ronald Acuña Jr. and the arrogance that springs from a dazzling crop of young players.

We have seen the taboo become reality. A shot clock now rules a once timeless sport. The impact cannot be underestimated.

Fast-paced games have made baseball enjoyable again. Sports are not a pigeonhole that mocks the biorhythms of American life. A new era of players can no longer torment us with their petty rituals and delaying tactics.

The sport no longer rejects young spectators. On the contrary, the shot clock and other new rules have showcased and liberated baseball’s best athletes.

Some still recoil at the drastic changes in professional baseball, for reasons that defy logic and the laws of entertainment. They are mostly old-school purists who already fear the ravages of time and don’t want that blaring clock anywhere near their favorite hobby or sleep aid.

But the problem was becoming serious and the doomsday clock was already ticking for the entire sport. The game had gone astray like a lost bison. The product in the field was terribly slow, stale and soft. You could spend 20 minutes waiting for a single slice of action.

On a related topic, a new research paper claims that the human population once dropped to around 1,300 before recovering from the brink of extinction. Humpback whales enjoyed a similar renaissance. Both function as metaphors for Major League Baseball.

Again, the point cannot be overstated. Commissioner Rob Manfred has said a lot of nonsense during his tenure. But one day history will declare him the man who saved an entire sport.

For Valley sports fans, it is an honor and a privilege to have the Diamondbacks continue on this very special run. They are chasing a playoff berth in the final stretch of a historic baseball season. They have been over .500 for 16 games. They have lost 25 of 32 games in the span of 42 days. They have been the most exciting and jarring attractions.

They could go lame before the finish line. They could speed up like the Secretariat. But the Diamondbacks are still here, still a central part of the story, part of the unwritten history of baseball in 2023. If we’re lucky, the ending will be even more compelling than the rest of the book.

#MLBs #stellar #season #baseball #track

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