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Matheny rooting for fake crowd noise: baseball without fans is ‘a different game’

Mike Matheny.jpg
Posted at 7:09 PM, Jul 11, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-11 20:09:49-04

MLB is still working through how the 2020 season will look, feel and even sound — likely without fans.

Royals first year manager Mike Matheny told the media this week he’s in favor of artificial crowd noise being pumped into stadiums during the regular season.

“When you can hear every word that’s not even shouted but just spoken,” he started. “It leaves it looking like a different game.”

According to The Athletic, Major League Baseball will supply teams with pre-recorded crowd noise to pump into fan-less stadiums.
The skipper said his opinions were largely informed by his experiences during Kansas City’s series of intrasquad scrimmages held at Kauffman Stadium.

“Being right behind the plate, [you] realize this is the atmosphere we’re going to be competing in,” Matheny said. “Every word a pitcher tries to say under his breath, I can hear it from home plate.”

In the aftermath of the Houston Astros sign stealing scandal, Matheny ponders if competitive issues could arise when both teams can hear signals and signs between teams.

Raw emotion may also play a factor Matheny said, with players using colorful language on the diamond.

“I’m just not so sure that’s something we want to hear every bit of,” he added. “I don’t think this is about making it a better experience for the player. I think it’s about masking some of the stuff you wouldn’t normally hear.”