From NorthJersey.com -
Umpire Joe West blasted the Yankees and Red Sox just before Wednesday's game, accusing the two clubs of being "pathetic and embarrassing" in dragging the pace of games and refusing to work with umpires.
"They're the two clubs that don't try to pick up the pace," said West, chief of the umpiring crew that worked the three-game series in Boston. He was the home plate umpire Sunday. "They're two of the best teams in baseball. Why are they playing the slowest?
"It's pathetic and embarrassing. They take too long to play."
Joe, you might want to look in the mirror. The strike zone, especially last night's, was just atrocious. How about calling the actual strike zone (which goes from the letters to the bottom of the knees)?
MLB thinks the problem lies with the Yankees? You can't fault our hitters for taking pitches and working the count. The progression of Three True Outcome baseball (strikeouts, homers and walks) has pushed pitch counts and games ever longer.
Add that to a 3" x 3" strike zone and what does West expect?
Instead of artificially making players speed up, how about helping out pitchers? If we can agree that effective offense makes baseball longer, and effective pitching makes it shorter, why not do something to help pitchers? I've mentioned it before, but raising the mound would be an incredibly simple way to do this (so naturally MLB won't do it, because, Cervelli forbid, offense might decrease a bit - and to MLB, offense = $$$).
What should be done, if anything, to speed up the pace of games?