I get off to MLB rule changes.
And these suggestions are no different. Overall, not too bad, but some of these do not seem necessary. Some of these are good, some are bad, and some are completely irrelevant. Here’s my ranking of them from the best to the worst:
1. A Single Trade Deadline Before The All Star Break: I’m a sucker for chaos and this would be the epitome of chaos. No more of this bullshit trade deadline at the end of July and then another de facto trade deadline at the end of August. The waiver trade deadline has completely taken the air out of the real trade deadline the last few years and I for one hate it. Give me teams scrambling in the waning minutes! My only gripe with this is I would prefer they leave it at July 31st. Give teams that extra two weeks after the All Star Break to figure out if they are buyers or sellers. But I am ALL for just one trade deadline.
2. Universal DH: I personally love the strategy of the National League. I love double switches and all of it. But I get it. Having a DH for everyone is better than having a DH for nobody, so I am okay with it becoming universal, and since I am okay with it, that means it’s okay to move forward with this rule.
3. Allow Two-Sport Amateurs To Sign MLB Contracts – Yeah this is probably because MLB is realizing they are going to be missing out on a huge marketing tool with Kyler Murray, but why not encourage more guys (or women, we don’t discriminate here) to pursue multiple sports if they want to and have the talent? Plus, it’s honestly so cool when you have a guy in multiple professional sports leagues!
4. 20 Second Pitch Clock: I’m actually surprised they haven’t implemented this yet. It’s been a thing in the minors for the past two or three seasons and from what I’ve read, it really hasn’t been an issue. Maybe since it has been in the minors, a lot of the players coming into the league now are used to it. If they’re looking to speed up the game, this is a simple implementation that really won’t interfere with the game play (when a runner is on the 20 second clock goes away in the minors at least).
5. Roster Expansion to 26 Men With 12 Pitcher Max: We’ve reached the portion of this list where I really don’t care what they do with these rules. Roster expansion kind of seems like a no-brainer with the emphasis on player rest and keep guys healthy. Unfortunately, this may mean less of a chance of a position player pitcher which is always a fun ride.
6. Draft Advantages For Winning Teams And Penalties For Losing Teams: This one just seems pointless to me. The MLB draft is 50 rounds. You know how many number one overall picks in the history of baseball are in the Hall of Fame? Three Ken Griffey Jr., Chipper Jones, and Harold Baines (who was voted in on the Veteran’s Committee). Maybe you can take away compensation picks or something? I don’t know, but I also don’t really think tanking is a huge issue in baseball. Going into 2020 off the top of my head I’d say more teams than not are in some way vying for a playoff spot:
- AL East – Red Sox, Yankees, Rays
- AL Central – Indians, Twins, White Sox
- AL West – Astros, Angels, Athletics
- NL East – Braves, Mets, Nats, Phillies
- NL Central – Cardinals, Cubs, Brewers (not to mention many are picking the Reds as their dark horse team this year)
- NL West – Dodgers, Rockies, Padres (if they land Harper)
That’s a solid 19/30 teams; 21/30 if you want to count the Reds and Padres. I don’t really care if they do something with draft picks, I just don’t really see it as a big deal.
7. A Study That Would Lower The Mound: I actually don’t even know what this means. Are they lowering the mound? Or are they just saying it’s okay to do studies to see what would happen if they lowered the mound?
8. Pitchers Must Throw To 3 Batter Minimum: I would say this is the only one I am staunchly against. I want to know the reasoning for this. Is it for pace of play? If that’s the case, this is where I hate these rules because this will affect how the game is played. Plus you will likely have a number of pitchers get “injured” if, say, they walk the first two batters. And not to mention it again takes a lot of strategy away. By the end of all these rule changes, maybe you won’t even need managers! AND lest we forget, an earlier rule suggestion was to expand rosters. So you want teams to expand rosters, but not pitch to the matchup just to save a little time? Nah I’m out on this one.
Overall though, really not too bad and chances are some of these get implemented this year in the minors as a test run.
I can’t wait for baseball.