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Manfred Is Thinking About It Newsbeat

Friday, March 29, 2019

Rob Manfred not too concerned with health of Atlantic League players

Rob Manfred was interviewed by Michael Kay at a public event yesterday and raised some eyebrows with several of his comments. Most of those were about labor and salaries and stuff and we may get to that later today. In the meantime, the most eyebrow-raising for me was his view on how cheaply he values the health of players in the independent leagues.

As you’re likely aware, Major League Baseball and the independent Atlantic League have entered into an agreement in which the Atlantic League will implement a number of rules changes which MLB is considering to see how they play out in real game situations. Basically, MLB is giving the Atlantic League some money in order to create a laboratory with the Atlantic League players as guinea pigs.

The most notable experiment will involve the pitchers’ mound. Specifically, the pitching rubber will be moved back two feet from 60’6″ to 62’6″. The idea: today’s high-velocity pitchers need a bit of a handicap, and perhaps doing this will cut down on strikeouts and increase offense. The concern, though, is that pitchers will try to compensate for this by trying to throw harder or by altering their pitching mechanics in order to change when and where balls break and slide and stuff. It may be an even bigger concern in the Atlantic League, where pitchers are already trying to work extra hard with, perhaps, lesser skills, in order to impress someone enough to get a contract in affiliated baseball.

Mind you, can we really be surprised by this news at all?

QLE Posted: March 29, 2019 at 08:52 AM | 15 comment(s)
  Beats: atlantic league, manfred is thinking about it, rob manfred

Thursday, March 28, 2019

Changing times: Baseball rife with new rules, approaches

For a sport that leans so much on familiarity and tradition, baseball seems to be changing at an unusually rapid pace. Whether it’s because of new technology, new strategies or new rules, the game could look a lot different over the next decade or so.

“I think the commissioner’s just trying to stay ahead of the curve, do what’s best for the game. There’s a lot of intelligent people thought this stuff over and there’s a lot of people involved,” said Jim Leyland, the longtime manager who is now a special assistant for the Detroit Tigers. “I’m a big believer that when you’ve had something in place for so, so long, any time there’s a change, there’s going to be a reaction. Some of it’s going to be pro, some of it’s going to be con.”

Changes in baseball tend to happen at the margins. Basketball added a 3-point line and a shot clock, so NCAA Tournament games on YouTube from 35 years ago can look noticeably different from the current product. As for baseball? Go back through the decades, and you’ll see the same basic battle between pitcher and hitter — with fielders positioned mostly the same way.

A discussion of the proposed rule changes- I’ll leave it to all of you to debate whether these are as drastic as the article is suggesting.

 

QLE Posted: March 28, 2019 at 05:49 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: manfred is thinking about it, rule changes

Saturday, March 16, 2019

Giants pitcher Jeff Samardzija wants ties in MLB

Giants pitcher Jeff Samardzija has an idea and he knows some people are going to find it weird.

He wants MLB games to end in ties.

“I don’t think we need to play extra-inning games,” he said, via the Mercury News. “End them in a tie, everyone gets one point like the Premier League. A win gets three points. Just end it at nine. We’re playing 162 games. Over that course of games, you should be able to tell who the best team is.”

If we’re going to be inundated with bad ideas as for rule changes, why not bad ideas from the players?

 

QLE Posted: March 16, 2019 at 08:24 AM | 48 comment(s)
  Beats: extra innings, jeff samardzija, manfred is thinking about it, rule changes, ties

Friday, March 15, 2019

MLB announces new rules for trade deadline, All-Star voting, Home Run Derby

Some stuff on the list that wasn’t in the article I uploaded yesterday:

As per usual, fans will be allowed to vote for the All-Star game starters online. The top three vote-getters will then be involved in a one-day election to determine who ultimately gets the honor. It’s a recipe for fun.

MLB is hoping to bring more of its top talent into the annual Home Run Derby by raising the stakes. Starting in 2019, the prize for the content will be $1 million. While that’s not earth-shattering money for some players, it’s quite a bit for others, including people who could win it. Aaron Judge, for instance, will make $684,300 in 2019, so winning the derby is certainly in his best interest.

We’ve heard a lot about a proposed three-batter minimum for relief pitchers, but that won’t happen in 2019. It will in 2020, though, the league says. The MLBPA didn’t agree to the rule change, via reports, but the Commissioner’s Office can implement it anyway next year. The joint announcement only says the MLBPA “will not grieve or otherwise challenge” the rule change in 2020.

So, one that is a good idea but won’t be implemented (if it ever is) until next year, one clearly bad idea (given the history of poll manipulation), and one that comes across to me as bribery- yup, these are Rob Manfred ideas if I ever saw one….

 

 


Thursday, March 14, 2019

A preview of the new procedural changes coming to MLB in 2020

We’re already discussing the changes to the trade deadline- some other changes that will be coming:

The players’ union and MLB are expected to announce they have agreed, in 2020, to:

Roster expansion by one to 26, including a maximum 13 pitchers, in the regular and postseasons. After Aug. 31, rosters may grow to as many as 28, with a maximum of 14 pitchers. Previously, September rosters were allowed 40 players. The larger roster creates 30 major league jobs.

Increasing the injured list and option-recall duration for pitchers from 10 to 15 days.

The shortening of between-inning breaks at Major League Baseball’s discretion.

Extra innings of the All-Star Game would begin with a runner at second base.

Three-batter rule has been rejected, and confirmation that the pitch clock won’t be coming in 2019 or 2020.

It seems to me that most of these decisions, either of rules to change or rules not changed, are terrible- what say you?


Friday, March 01, 2019

Potential MLB, MLBPA rule changes could impact Giants at some point

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — For weeks there have been rumors that MLB and the MLB Players Association could come to an agreement on new rules, but that hasn’t been at the forefront of conversations in the Giants clubhouse.

When asked about the possibility of changes, several veteran players have pointed out that the real issue right now is the slowdown in free agency and service time manipulation, not a universal DH or a pitch clock.

“Some of these rules seem pretty insignificant to me considering the bigger picture,” Buster Posey said earlier this month.

A discussion of rule changes being considered- of note as a summary of those apparently under active consideration.


Thursday, February 28, 2019

Rob Manfred still thinks other factors contributed to rise in homers

In 2017, analysts began asking questions about the rise in home runs across baseball. Two studies were published — one by Ben Lindbergh and Mitchell Lichtman for The Ringer, and another by Rob Arthur for FiveThirtyEight — with each concluding that baseballs seem to have been altered at some point around the middle of the 2015 season.

Commissioner Rob Manfred was disingenuous speaking about the issue, releasing a statement in July 2017 and then speaking about it to the press during the postseason in October that year. Manfred reiterated that the baseball wasn’t changed, then disingenuously claimed players, fans, and analysts were being distracted by Game 2 of the World Series, which saw the Astros and Dodgers combine to hit eight home runs. Then-Astros pitcher Dallas Keuchel said the next day, “Obviously, the balls are juiced. I think they’re juiced 100 percent.” Keuchel joined fellow pitchers Justin Verlander, David Price, Brad Ziegler, Jerry Blevins, and Chris Archer among those to have spoken publicly about feeling a difference with the baseball.

MLB commissioned its own study — published on May 24, 2018 — on the rise of homers across the league. The executive summary concluded that the rise in home runs is attributable to “a decrease in the ball’s drag properties, which cause it to carry further than previously, given the same set of initial conditions—exit velocity, launch and spray angle, and spin.” Manfred acknowledged the study, saying, “I thank the committee for all of its hard work on this important issue. Based on the results of their study, I am accepting their recommendations immediately and look forward to their continued guidance in this area.”

Of course, wait just a few minutes, and Manfred will change his mind again.

QLE Posted: February 28, 2019 at 07:44 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: baseballs, homers, manfred is thinking about it, rob manfred

Monday, February 18, 2019

Rob Manfred: MLB will use pitch clock during spring training

Like it or not, a pitch clock is coming to an MLB spring training game near you.

MLB commissioner Rob Manfred told reporters Sunday that the league would be making use of a pitch clock during spring training, though it will pretty much only be a cosmetic change as it won’t carry penalties.

This change comes as MLB officials reportedly push to use a pitch clock during the 2019 season in negotiations with the MLB Players Association, though it doesn’t mean an agreement has been reached either way.

“Like it or not”? Who, exactly, likes the do-si-do of pitchers and batters- Mike Hargrove?

 

QLE Posted: February 18, 2019 at 07:25 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: manfred is thinking about it, pitch clock, spring training

Saturday, February 09, 2019

Manfred: No DH or draft changes likely for 2019

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — Don’t look for a National League designated hitter this year or for new anti-tanking rules in June’s amateur draft.

Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred said Friday that management is focused on pace-of-game changes for 2019 and bolder ideas proposed by the players’ association are too complex to be put in place for this season.

Speaking Friday after an owners’ meeting, Manfred felt encouraged the union responded to management’s proposal for a pitch clock and a three-batter minimum for a relief pitcher unless an inning ends.

The Man of 1000 Ideas (None Of Them Any Good)

 

QLE Posted: February 09, 2019 at 06:18 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: dh, draft, manfred is thinking about it

Friday, January 25, 2019

Report: MLB considering rule change that could slow down the game’s hottest pitching trend

When Major League Baseball changed the 15-day disabled list to the 10-day disabled list in 2016, the idea was coming from a good place.

League officials and the players’ union were trying to make it easier for ailing players to actually go on the disabled list and not try to play through injuries. A 15-day stint felt too long sometimes. The 10-day DL fixed that.

What it also did, however, was give Major League Baseball teams — all of them getting smarter, all of them looking for any advantages — a new tactic to get an upper hand. DL stints rose by almost 200 annually since the new rules were put in place. At the same time, there were an additional 682 relief pitchers appearances last year alone, while the length of starts is going down.

Should this take place, I wonder what will occur as a result- the long-term trend has not been for reductions in either relievers or their usage.

 

QLE Posted: January 25, 2019 at 03:46 AM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: dl, manfred is thinking about it, rule changes

Saturday, January 19, 2019

If MLB Implements a Significant Rule Change in 2019, It Will Be a Pitch Clock

No proposed rules change would improve baseball’s pace of action issue more than a pitch clock, which is why Major League Baseball officials prioritized getting a pitch clock for the 2019 season at a meeting with Players Association officials Monday. The union, which has been cool to the idea, said it would continue to discuss the issue with its players along with “smaller items” related to proposed rules changes that were presented Monday.

MLB officials did not press for any rules changes regarding defensive shifts, which means shifts are likely to remain unchanged for 2019.

Baseball prefers to introduce any rules changes in time for spring training games. Unlike with the pitch clock, owners do not have the right to unilaterally implement changes to defensive shifts in 2019.

Unfortunately, since this is a good idea, Manfred is unlikely to enact it.

 

QLE Posted: January 19, 2019 at 06:43 AM | 25 comment(s)
  Beats: manfred is thinking about it, pitch clock, rule changes

 

 

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