Ok, I admit it - when it comes to baseball I am a Dinosaur. I've come to accept egregious rules changes - the Designated Hitter. Three Batter Minimum for relief pitchers. Time Clocks (?!!!) on pitchers. (Really? One fact baseball could always lord over basketball, football, soccer, etc was the open-ended nature of the games.)
Here's what They are doing now. In the Minor Leagues (for now) but watch out.
All to curate "Fan Interest":
- Base sizes: In Triple-A, the sizes of each base will be increased from 15-inch squares to 18-inch squares.
- Defensive positioning: In Double-A, teams will be required to position four players in the infield: Each player must have both feet in front of the outer boundary of the infield dirt. In the second half of the season, MLB may also require that teams keep two infielders on each side of second base, though that is not a requirement at the outset.
- Step-off rule: In High-A, pitchers will be required to disengage the rubber before attempting a pickoff throw; violations will result in a balk.
- Electronic strike zone: In the Low-A Southeast League, select games (it’s unclear which ones or how many) will use the electronic strike zone first tested in the Atlantic League and Arizona Fall League.
- Pitch timer: In the Low-A West League, pitchers will be placed on a 15-second pitch clock, which is five second faster than the clock currently used in Double-A and Triple-A.
- Pickoff limits: Across Low-A, pitchers will only be allowed to step off twice per plate appearance. Any subsequent throw over must result in successfully retiring the runner, or it’s a balk.
I'll have more on this later - maybe tomorrow. Maybe next week. No one cares but we Dinosaurs, but hell, we need something to read before we go extinct....
This tune was written for an entirely different reason, but it applies here. How Long You Gonna Stand? (For This). It's a demo, so be kind....