What's wrong with Take me Out to the Holosuite? It was a sillly, funny episode. I enjoyed it.
I hate it.
I reserve this kind of hate for episodes that are worse than awful; there's something really wrong at the core of them.
This is the episode that introduced Vulcan bashing, which became a thing for the rest of televised Star Trek. It's not enough that Vulcans are different. Oh no. They also have to be insufferable, overbearing, and nakedly emotional to the point that they can't even pretend that they're not. It's turning the idea of Vulcans on its head and replacing it with something ugly and one-dimensional.
The original series always played with the idea of Vulcans -- were they really unemotional, or were they just pretending or stifling their emotions? This DS9 episode simply makes them assholes, and that's the precedent that set the tone for Voyager and Enterprise.
That's bad enough. Then we have Sisko gleefully trying to "get" them. For as progressive as "Far Beyond The Stars" is, here we have an example of casual racism that I find appalling, doubly so coming from Sisko. It is not just the Vulcan character is a jerk, but Vulcans are jerks, and it's the job of every red-blooded Starfleet officer to show them up with baseball.
Then we get an episode which gives the term "afterschool special" (look it up) a bad name. It's treacly and simplistic and stupid.
The episode's big revelation is that it should just be a game and friends are, like, more important than winning the tournament that shows you are the superior race.
That's dumb and it's reductive. Sometimes competitions are important. Otherwise, why practice, why work hard, why field a team in the first place? Of course, winning isn't everything. But you don't just take everyone's time and effort and say they don't matter by letting complete imbeciles play. The idea that just because someone wants to play a game because it looks fun means that you should just give up on all your training and hard work is insulting and brain dead. Let's let anyone, regardless of ability level, play on our Olympic teams because that would be fair and anything else would get in the way of everyone's fun.
The really obvious answer is that you can play a frickin' game of holodeck baseball whenever you want. It's a holodeck. Rom doesn't have to come in and stink up the field on a tournament when everyone can just schedule another game against a computerized team for him anytime. It's a false dilemma that's there only to sell the vapid, heartwarming message that being nice to the village idiot is more important than showing up a bunch of arrogant pricks.
So, basically, I see the entire episode as a stupid, simplistic waste of everyone's time. The only person I think that acts with half a brain cell is Rom because he realizes what's going on and actually understands that him playing on the team is not necessary and is bringing the rest of the team down. He is the only one with more than a stimulus-response in the entire episode. Then, the episode takes great pains to show how wrong that is, and how we should let everyone play, no matter their ability level, no matter the circumstance, because for some reason that's the right thing to do.
It's bullshit. This is not the kind of message I expect from DS9. It's what I expect from a Lifetime movie, or something on the Disney channel. But it's not even consistent. Here we have this sanitized, brain-dead happy happy message that takes place in the same episode as the ugliest racism I think I've seen on Trek. It's easy to dismiss because Vulcans aren't real. But substitute any real-life ethnicity into the dialogue and you would get something that would make just about any thinking person uncomfortable. It goes beyond the Vulcan character being a jerk. It's sending the message that Vulcans are jerks and it's okay to hate them for being jerks, and that we should do stuff to make them feel bad and show we're better than them.
Finally, there's the little things. There's the fact that this episode comes in the middle of the last season, in the middle of a war. They really have nothing better to do? When I think of what an extra hour could accomplish, I really get annoyed. Fate of Cardassia? Resolution for Garak? Some denoument for Kira? Nah, let's play holodeck baseball.
And, to be really petty, Kira's uniform annoys the out of me. On her jersey, it says "Nerys". That's the equivalent of her 'first' name in Western terms. Her jersey should say "Kira" because she is Major Kira.
Rather than dismiss that as a nerdy nitpick, I hold it up as an example that no one gave a during this episode. Either no one noticed (because they were all brain dead) or someone noticed and they decided not to fix it. I'm not sure which is worse.