The English Premier League ensures quality and competitiveness by relegating the bottom three performing teams in the league every year. From Wikipedia:
"In many sports leagues around the world (with U.S., Canadian and Australian professional leagues being the most notable exceptions), promotion and relegation is a process that takes place at the end of each season in which teams are transferred between divisions. The best-ranked teams in each division are promoted to the next-highest division, and at the same time the worst-ranked teams in the higher division are relegated to the lower division. This process may continue down through several levels, with teams being exchanged between levels 1 and 2, levels 2 and 3, levels 3 and 4, and so on. Sometimes, qualifying rounds are used to promote and relegate."
My question is - if this were incorporated into MLB today, how would it affect the Royals? My thoughts:
1. The "Process" would be forced to be accelerated.
If GMDM didn't win enough games to stay out of the bottom three, the financial implications of being shuttled to a lower league would likely cost him his job. Average to below average managers (Hillman, Yost) would not be tolerated long.
2. No more stop gaps.
Instead of looking for patchwork role players (Bloomy, Pods, Ex-Mariner and Ex-Brave relievers), he would have to get impact players and use the minors to fill in the gaps. Players like Kila, Gordon, Aviles, and Maier would be playing everyday. Mistakes like YuBet, Farnsworth, and Guillen would have to eliminated much quicker. The Royals would have to play in the market for at least one big, impact FA every year.
3. The organization would be forced to think differently.
No matter what comes out in the public quotes, there is no a real urgency to win now for Glass, or the front office. I'm not a Glass basher by any means, and I'm grateful for him keeping the team in KC. At the end of the day though, there is no real financial incentive for him to win now. If relegation was the penalty, the financial implications would make owners shudder. Often times it can mean bankruptcy for EPL teams. As a result, you cannot question the urgency to not be bottom fodder (Royals) year in and year out.
4. The Naturals would be promoted as the Royals were relegated.
Okay, not really, but I couldn't resist.
Any other thoughts on what the implications would be? Would you, as a fan, be in favor of a system like this?