1980 to Present – The Modern Era
The recent years have brought triumph and frustration to baseball. Triumph has included the shattering of records that many thought would never be touched. Mark McGwire had a 70 home run season. Barry Bonds had a 73 home run season a few years later.
Cal Ripken set a new mark for coming to work, breaking Lou Gehrig’s consecutive games played streak.
New franchises have joined the fray including Tampa Bay, Arizona, Colorado and Florida. The leagues have been divided into three divisions and an extra round of playoffs has been added to include a fourth wildcard team in the playoffs.
In terms of tragedy, baseball has suffered through strikes and work stoppages. Each time baseball has dealt with one, the fans have responded by staying away for periods of time. As is the case in the 1919 season, certain players have stepped up to bring interest to the game. Ripken did it by breaking the Gehrig record. McGwire and Sammy Sosa did it by hitting massive amounts of home runs.
Baseball has also entered the cyber area and fans can get up-to-date stats and scores through any computer. Baseball’s new future is a continuing work in progress.