(New York) Major League Baseball officials are reportedly poised to announce a time limit on home runs and restrictions on defensive tackles next season in an effort to shorten the length of games and improve the offense.
Posted on September 8
Major League Baseball’s 11-member competition committee is expected to confirm Friday the implementation of a 15-second countdown to make a pitch when there are no runners on the tracks and a 20-second countdown when there is.
The pitch timeout in Major League Baseball will be slightly longer than it was in Minor League Baseball this season, at 14 seconds with the bases empty and 19 seconds with runners on at the AAA level. In the lower levels of minor league baseball, the limits were 14 and 18 seconds.
In terms of defensive strategies, the new rule states that four players, in addition to the pitcher and receiver, must be in front of the turf when making a pitch, and there can be no more than two defensive players on each side. the second pillow.
Also, during each at-bat, the pitcher will not be able to take his foot off the plate on the mound or throw to the pad to catch a runner at fault more than twice, which Major League Baseball officials call a “disconnect.”
If the pitcher attempts a third attempt and fails, an illegal block will be called. If the runner advances, the limit is reduced to two.
Finally, the size of the goals will increase from 15 square inches to 18 square inches. Initially, this measure will provide a little more safety for the first baseman, who will be less likely to have his foot pinched by the batter. In addition, it could allow for an increased number of stolen bases, since the distance between the pads will be slightly reduced.
The plan, first reported by The Athletic, was detailed by two Major League Baseball officials who spoke on condition of anonymity because the changes are expected to be announced Friday.
The changes will take effect at the next training session.
In the minor leagues, the addition of a stopwatch cut the average length of a nine-inning game from three hours and four minutes in 2021 to two hours and 38 minutes this season.
The average length of a nine-inning Major League Baseball game this year is three hours and six minutes. According to Elias Sports, it was two hours and 46 minutes in 1989.
“It’s slow. It’s boring,” New York Yankees pitcher CC Sabathia said of the televised 2017 game.
“It’s so hard to watch when you have no interest in it.” »