Some modest proposals

Without knowing all of the specifics of the sale of the Houston Astros, I really like the idea of their moving to the American League West in 2013. This will mean that all six divisions have the same number of teams. It is rather ludicrous to have four teams fighting for one division while six fight for another. Now it will be five teams fighting for a division all around. So sensible.

Geographically, I suppose the Astros are farther "west" than any AL Central team, so I don't see any need for jockeying baseball teams beyond the straight move from NL Central to AL West. Clean and simple.

In football, however, I'd like to neaten things up a bit.

First, a move that struck me while attending those games two weeks ago: swap the Bills and Ravens. Buffalo travels over 300 miles to every one of its division road games. Now, that's a hop, skip and jump for western teams, but, in the interest of strengthening regional rivalries, why not swap Baltimore and Buffalo? Last time, I looked, Baltimore was way more east than Buffalo, and Buffalo was more north than Baltimore. The Ravens can easily build rivalries with the Patriots and the Jets, and, sure, it's still a good trip down the coast to Miami, but at least there is no disputing the fact that the Fish are also in the east. Not to say that western NY isn't east, but Buffalo is considerably closer to Cleveland and Pittsburgh in the AFC North than any of its current division rivalries. So simple.

Second, can we just get the damn Cowboys out of the NFC East already? I mean, their basketball and hockey teams are in the western divisions and conferences of their sports, and as a Giants fan I just see no good reason to have America's team on the schedule twice a year. They are the Cowboys after all, and will fuel rivalries in any division they play. Further, St. Louis is farther east than Dallas. A simple, straight up swap: Rams to the NFC East, and the Cowpokes to the NFC West. So desirable.

Now we need to come up with a proposal for getting Indianapolis out of the AFC South. Indianapolis in the south just just sounds stupid. If Miami and Indy trade places, and then we put Buffalo back to the East in exchange for Indy going to the North, we may have something. There are enough domes all around to negate the influence of warm and cold playing locations in the schedule. I think I like this. Still, so confusing.

And, finally, if I can go back to hockey for a second, I'd propose more Canadian teams and no more franchises south of the Mason-Dixon line. Or, at least not south of I-40...


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