From Our Archive
This story was published before Summer 2021, when we launched our new digital experience.

Questions for John Smoltz

Three questions for the ex-Atlanta Brave.

Photography by Timothy A. Clary/AFP via Getty Images.


The Last Word on the US Open

Carvell Wallace on greatness, Serena, and the US Open’s best menswear.

Innovation in the world of vegan meat products has yielded a new crop of elevated culinary offerings.

Food and Drink

The Future of Plant-Based Food

These three Bay Area companies are leading the way when it comes to innovation,...

Who Is Wellness For?

Body and Mind

Who Is Wellness For?

Fariha Róisín shares the necessary ingredients for positive participation.

Q: Any ideas on how to improve baseball?

A: I’ve always been a big believer in shortening the season and having more play-off games. Play-off baseball’s about as good as it gets. But I would split the season in half: I’d have a first-half winner and a second-half winner, and the wild card would be the team with the next best record. It would stop these mass tradings and unloadings of salaries. So, if you had a bad first half, you’re still in it for the second. These small-market teams can win a first or second half, but they just can’t compete over [the course of] 162 games.

Q: Why don’t you coach?

A: If my kids were away at college, that’s something I could think about. But if I had to fight the [strategies] that exist today from the top down, I don’t think I would do very well. I don’t think pitching is getting better when they’re putting five or six pitchers in a game and telling starters that five or six innings is a good job.

Q: Is it important to not just play baseball if you want to be an elite player?

A: Absolutely. I think our kids are missing out on so much. They’re becoming all-consuming, one-sport players. If you play only one sport all year, it’s going to wear you out. Kids today don’t get outside enough: Technology is rotting away opportunities.


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