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Buster's Buzz: A checkup on the state of baseball

Baseball fans packed stadiums from coast to coast in 2018, so who says the game is in trouble? Isaiah J. Downing/USA Today Sports

The most predictable nonpolitical responses on Twitter might occur whenever a baseball wart is noted. If you mention the rising rate of strikeouts or the laborious pace of a World Series game or a big contract signing, a chorus of followers will immediately chime in with: That's why baseball is dying.

Or, That's why baseball is dead.

Or, Nobody watches baseball.

Or, Quidditch has surpassed baseball as the national pastime.

OK, nobody wrote that last one, but you get the point. And you hear news like that announced at this week's owners' meetings, that the Major League Baseball and Fox have agreed to a seven-year, $5.1 billion extension of the current deal -- an agreement with an increase in fees of 36 percent.