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Wednesday, November 07, 2012

MLB thinking of changing callups rule

Proud city fathers used to watch them play
Tears in their eyes…

MLB executive vice president for baseball operations Joe Torre said general managers discussed the matter Wednesday on the opening day of their annual meeting.

Some teams have been reluctant to use the larger limit late in the season. They have cited not wanting to disrupt minor league teams in their playoffs, and those decisions have led to big league games in which teams have differing numbers of available players.

‘‘Each team should have equal number of players available every day,’’ Torre said. ‘‘I just think you play the whole season with one set of rules and the most important time of the year, especially for clubs that are in a pennant race, I just don’t think it’s fair for it to be done (with a) different number of roster people.’‘

Torre said one possibility would be setting a fixed number of players who must be on the active roster for September games.

‘‘We’ve talked about 28. We’ve talked about 30,’’ he said. ‘‘It was talked about at length today.’‘

Repoz Posted: November 07, 2012 at 09:08 PM | 15 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   1. Walt Davis Posted: November 07, 2012 at 11:23 PM (#4297623)
Alternatively you do something like a (up to) 40-man roster but only 25 can be active for any one game. Everybody would get to move their other 4 starting pitchers off and competing teams could still add a little bullpen depth, pinch-runner, 3rd C, whatever.
   2. Bruce Markusen Posted: November 07, 2012 at 11:34 PM (#4297628)
How about something simple like having a set 30-man roster for September? That way each team can call up their top Triple-A prospects and activate a player or two from the DL. With five extra players, that would give teams potentially a third catcher, an extra pinch hitter or two, a pinch-running specialist and one or two pitchers.
   3. flournoy Posted: November 08, 2012 at 12:35 AM (#4297655)
Alternatively you do something like a (up to) 40-man roster but only 25 can be active for any one game. Everybody would get to move their other 4 starting pitchers off and competing teams could still add a little bullpen depth, pinch-runner, 3rd C, whatever.


Teams would love this; I don't know that the players would. As I understand it, a big part of the reluctance to call up a whole slew of players is the need to pay those players a major league salary. So if, for example, you deactivate a rookie starting pitcher, he loses his major league salary for those four days until you reactivate him. Fixing stuff like this and closing all the loopholes seems like messy business.
   4. Walt Davis Posted: November 08, 2012 at 12:44 AM (#4297657)
Teams would love this; I don't know that the players would. As I understand it, a big part of the reluctance to call up a whole slew of players is the need to pay those players a major league salary. So if, for example, you deactivate a rookie starting pitcher, he loses his major league salary for those four days until you reactivate him. Fixing stuff like this and closing all the loopholes seems like messy business.

No, the ML roster would still be 40 (or whatever) so you'd still be paying everybody, it's just only 25 would be eligible to play that day. No different in essence than soccer's limited subs rule.

How about something simple like having a set 30-man roster for September?

Which seems to be what Torre's talking about and, yes, this is a simple, easy solution -- almost as easy as just sticking with 25-man rosters! As long as all the teams are fine with that, that's obviously the way you go. But I assume some teams want to have lots of call-ups as rewards for good behavior, to look at players in MLB conditions or for whatever reason some teams currently carry 35-40 guys in Sept even though they don't have to. Something akin to my idea would allow all the teams to be happy.

But, yes, if everybody's cool with just dropping the Sept roster limit from 40 to 30 (or whatever) then that's the way to go.
   5. The Yankee Clapper Posted: November 08, 2012 at 12:51 AM (#4297662)
Alternatively you do something like a (up to) 40-man roster but only 25 can be active for any one game. Everybody would get to move their other 4 starting pitchers off and competing teams could still add a little bullpen depth, pinch-runner, 3rd C, whatever.

A lot of the playing time for call-ups is unplanned - in blowouts or late in games with "safe" leads and when unlikely game situations arise. So much of that evaluation time would be lost with an advance designation of 25 or 30 active players.
   6. The Ghost of Sox Fans Past Posted: November 08, 2012 at 12:53 AM (#4297663)
I don't see a big disadvantage to a team that doesn't call up a bunch of guys, though I'm a little tired of seeing a parade of 1-2 batter relievers enter a game. Set it at 28.
   7. zachtoma Posted: November 08, 2012 at 01:27 AM (#4297671)
This really seems like a solution to a problem that doesn't exist to me.
   8. Bhaakon Posted: November 08, 2012 at 02:18 AM (#4297681)
TBH, I don't really see any reason to change the current system. Adding extra players doesn't confer much advantage at all. Baseball games are generally won by throwing the best players on the field, not attrition. Any manager who tries to win with numbers (by getting match up happy with relievers and pinch hitters) will have to deal with the fact that players 26-through-40 just aren't that good (and if they are, then the team was doing it wrong all season long anyway).
   9. Toothless Posted: November 08, 2012 at 02:29 AM (#4297684)
It could be just like Strat-O-Matic! Just unclick the starter from yesterday, and add another reliever, so you can have nine or more for the next game. Sweeeeeet.
   10. Bote Man Posted: November 08, 2012 at 07:45 AM (#4297712)
‘‘Each team should have equal number of players available every day,’’ Torre said.

If this is causing great angst amongst certain teams, then those certain teams can call up as many players as do their competitors. Simple solution, and it doesn't require any change to rules or policies.
   11. Bug Selig Posted: November 08, 2012 at 07:45 AM (#4297713)
This really seems like a solution to a problem that doesn't exist to me.


+1. A solution that clearly demands a problem.
   12. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: November 08, 2012 at 09:20 AM (#4297807)
TBH, I don't really see any reason to change the current system.


Yep, same here. I really enjoy seeing all the random callups playing at the end of the year, and preserving the sanctity of the minor league playoffs would seem like it ought to be a fairly low-priority goal.
   13. LargeBill Posted: November 08, 2012 at 09:51 AM (#4297847)
Only numbers that matter are that on every play there will be only nine players allowed to play defense and a maximum of 4 offensive players (3 base runners and a batter). Number sitting on the bench or blowing bubbles in the bullpen is unimportant. MLB has a long season and having a few extra players to give some rest to guys in last month not such a bad idea (particularly for catchers). Leave it alone.
   14. Bourbon Samurai, what price fettucine? Posted: November 08, 2012 at 10:10 AM (#4297869)
I like seeing all the random guys.
   15. JJ1986 Posted: November 08, 2012 at 10:19 AM (#4297877)
I don't really like the rules, but I don't understand why everyone is suddenly concerned about how this affects competitive balance. It hasn't been a problem for decades. I assume this is an orchestrated plot by the owners to save a few bucks and the media just served as a mouthpiece for them without considering anything at all.

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