The most recent MLB campaigns have given us some rule changes. 2020 was a pivotal year in this regard, especially as the rule book grew, especially as the pitcher had to face three battles (or finish the inning) and the time of a season, a designated hitter who added his full time nationally.
In short, it is no secret that Rob Manfred wants to innovate in some aspects of the game of baseball.
2021 will not be so different, earlier today the MLP announced a series of new rules that will be tested in small leagues.
Here is a quick short solution:
- At the AAA level, the targets will be enlarged, which will now be 18 inches wide (they are currently 15 inches wide). We like to minimize conflicts and injuries while trying to encourage target stealing to a certain extent.
- At the AA level, where we can see the biggest change, teams are forced to keep four players in the infield and they have to keep both feet in the sand. Keep in mind that special care can be completely eliminated in the second half of the season.
- At a strong level, throw the ball at a foot and remove both legs from the mound to try to get a runner out. We like to try to encourage targeted theft in this way.
- In Level A, we will establish the rules for speeding up the game, according to the different leagues. Throwers will be limited to two relays per set towards the first floor, and if they try a third and the runner is safe, we will announce one. Illegal Find and Runners may advance to the next site. The countdown to the throw will be re-tested and the robot referees will be behind the plate.
The MLP says the goal of the new rules is to “increase activity on the tracks, promote batted balls in the game, improve the pace and duration of games and reduce injuries”.
The biggest change here is probably in special care. Majors managers are constantly innovating in this area, while we have seen two-player infields with five players left on the outfield.
Fixing the Rockies here is apparently illegal. In fact, for the most part, only Ian Desmond and three offfielders will be legally placed.
Is this a precursor to the immediate end of those special protections in key baseball? Very possible. We know that the Commissioner is not the biggest supporter of doing these things and it will soon disappear.
In short, what do you think about these changes? We need to see what happens in a competitive environment, but at the moment, I’m a little scared about some of these changes.
So let’s move on.