A modern custom that needs to change

Are his teammates congratulating Scott Kazmir because he pitched well? We can't tell anymore. AP Photo/LM Otero

Baseball has a problem, and it needs to be fixed. Like, today.

An edict from new commissioner Rob Manfred would be perfect, but probably too much to ask for. A collective effort from managers such as Terry Francona would be nice, but holding out hope for that is unrealistic. Maybe the best chance would be for players to start self-policing.

This is not about pace-of-play rules, or shattered maple bats, and OK, I'll admit it, this is really not that big of a deal. But for someone who watches thousands of games a year, this is an issue that sticks out to me like a pimple on the forehead of the game. Every time I see this happen, I feel like a neat freak staring at a crumpled napkin in the middle of the kitchen floor. An unwritten rule has apparently taken over the sanity of everyone in dugouts across America.

Can we please stop with the high-fiving and handshakes for the pitcher who gets removed from the game after getting lit up?

I saw it again the other day at a Cubs-Angels game. Sean Newcomb is a fine, young left-handed pitcher, 21 years old and the pride of the University of Hartford, and I'm sure he has a fine career ahead of him, with his easy delivery and good velocity.