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Thursday, November 11, 2021

Are Pitch Clocks Coming To MLB? Here’s What 19 Executives Had To Say

Astros general manager James Click: “I think we all want a little bit more pace to the game and I think if we were to implement a pitch clock, I don’t know how many pitchers it would actually affect. A lot of guys keep a pretty good pace already. But I also want to make sure we think through how it affects the fielders, how it affects the batter, how it affects the catcher. If we’ve got runners on base and we need to go through signs, if a guy needs to step out and get the signs from the third base coach, there’s a lot of that communication and things that go on between pitches in a major league game. So making sure that we haven’t lost sight of those is critical when we’re making those decisions.”

Mariners president of baseball operations Jerry Dipoto: “I think (all of the rules changes) are interesting, but the time clock, the pitching clock, has always been something I’ve been interested in because it’s something that we’ve slowly been implementing over time in baseball. I think that has a chance to really be a positive in both time of game and the action that we’re seeing on the field, which is what we’re trying to get to as an industry, a more interesting game.”

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 11, 2021 at 12:05 PM | 54 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: pitch clocks

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   1. Pat Rapper's Delight (as quoted on MLB Network) Posted: November 11, 2021 at 12:31 PM (#6052506)
In the interest of equal time, I'd like to hear what 19 executives from The Official Gaming Partners of Major League Baseball™ have to say about pitch clocks.
   2. The Duke Posted: November 11, 2021 at 02:56 PM (#6052547)
Love the idea but I prefer my game of baseball without clocks. Can’t you achieve the same by telling the batter he can’t step out of box unless he hits a foul ball or if there is some other event like passed ball/WP, stolen base etc. it achieves the same thing without a clock. Step out and it’s a strike.

I’d be ok with a hybrid where they install clock now and then teach the minor leaguers to stay in box and introduce that concept in 3-4 years.

None of this is hard - they just haven’t wanted to do it and I expect it’s a combination of hitters wanting more time to plan and pitchers needing more time between pitches to amp up speed. I’ve only ever heard management talk about a clock.
   3. Doug Jones threw harder than me Posted: November 11, 2021 at 03:33 PM (#6052554)
There is NOTHING stopping a TEAM from putting up a 12-second (!!!) pitch clock in the stadium and then blowing horns, whistles, encouraging the fans to boo, etc. when it is violated, or when the batter steps out of the box in between pitches. It's in the rule book already, just not enforced (unless they've changed the rules very recently):

The 12-second rule

It could be a MARKETING tactic as well as a COMPETITIVE advantage, if everyone coming, to, say, Oakland-Alameda County Stadium knew they suddenly had to work faster, and the A's (for example) were used to it. Given the slovenly pace teams are used to, it might even be an extreme competitive advantage.

Come on, David Forst, you know you want to. Maybe do something that would attract your fans, instead of sending them emails asking them to fill out a survey to gauge their feelings regarding a move to Las Vegas.
   4. tonywagner Posted: November 11, 2021 at 03:44 PM (#6052557)
Can’t you achieve the same by telling the batter he can’t step out of box unless he hits a foul ball or if there is some other event like passed ball/WP, stolen base etc. it achieves the same thing without a clock. Step out and it’s a strike.

What about pitchers?
   5. base ball chick Posted: November 11, 2021 at 04:39 PM (#6052566)
Astros general manager James Click: “I think we all want a little bit more pace to the game and I think if we were to implement a pitch clock, I don’t know how many pitchers it would actually affect. A lot of guys keep a pretty good pace already.


- excuse YOU mr. click.

"good pace" mah Black ass

you wanna see what "good pace" is, go back 15-20 years and watch roy oswalt. that's Get The Ball Throw The Ball, Work Fast Throw Strikes

there is NOT ONE astros pitcher who takes only 12 seconds between pitches with bases empty. i know. i have watched some of your long, boring games and timed the time in between pitches.

and you and i know that enforcing the pitch clock and the guys stepping out horse **** after every single ****ing pitch is not gonna stop unless the umpires are ordered by the league to enforce it (and fined if they don't). and i disbelieve MLB cares one bit about really speeding the game up and getting more action seeing as how it is obvious that the ONLY action they give a **** about is the gambling action

MLB does NOT care one little bit about actual fans like us. they care about the casual persons who come to a game and spend a lot of $$$ on food and parking and merch
- and they care about selling corporate boxes and bidness events.

things are not gonna change

i would say - what's the point of having better ballplayers when your tactic for 25 years has been to put them down, refuse to pimp anyone so they can be portrayed as greedy stealing money from penniless owners and making games too expensive to "fans".

how about - the braves build their ballpark in a location where it is physically impossible to take public transportation to the ballpark and the parking lot size is limited so they can't have enough space for all the cars for a full stadium (and there is NOWHERE within 2 miles that people can park besides there) so they can get kickbacks from their friends at uber. - this way they can limit "fans" to the rich. so ida wanna hear no nothin about "greedy" players


   6. Doug Jones threw harder than me Posted: November 11, 2021 at 05:16 PM (#6052573)
there is NOT ONE astros pitcher who takes only 12 seconds between pitches with bases empty. i know. i have watched some of your long, boring games and timed the time in between pitches.


Yep. Not just Astros pitchers. It always struck me that Billy Beane from all reports never watched the games, just sat in the bowels of the stadium on an exercise bike, presumably looking at spreadsheets.

Maybe some of the executives should watch the games, and ask themselves, how is my experience as a fan? Isn't that their job?

- and they care about selling corporate boxes and bidness events.


I think that is the real reason the A's want to move, because there just aren't enough Oakland-based potential corporate partners.

   7. Jack Sommers Posted: November 11, 2021 at 06:14 PM (#6052583)
Pitch clock / stay in box enforcement works. PLayers ##### and moan the first few times a ball or strike is called. Then they get used to it and the pace becomes normal and does not feel hurried at all.

Also, balls in play increase, fewer 3 TO. So not only better pace, but a little bit more action.

I've always felt that would be the case, but didn't have evidence to support it until this year.

For all those that bemoan with comments like "a clock in baseball is blasphemy ", or any of the various versions, I simply posit that the clock gives the umps the tools and cover they need to enforce the rules that have been on the books forever , which obviously they can't do now after decades of this B.S.

I promise, after 1 month of play with the pitch clock....you won't even notice it and neither will the players. It fades into the background as the players internal clocks become accustomed and then the umps never have to call them on it, or almost never.



   8. Zach Posted: November 11, 2021 at 07:45 PM (#6052595)
I promise, after 1 month of play with the pitch clock....you won't even notice it and neither will the players. It fades into the background as the players internal clocks become accustomed and then the umps never have to call them on it, or almost never.

Yeah, when you're watching a basketball game, how many times a game does the play clock play a major role?

Trick question, because the answer is it plays a major role in every possession by preventing teams from playing four corners. But it feels like it only comes into play once or twice a game because it prompts players to play the game at the pace basketball is supposed to be played at.
   9. Doug Jones threw harder than me Posted: November 11, 2021 at 09:09 PM (#6052607)
Just to re-iterate, my basic point is that the "pitch clock" doesn't have to wait for MLB to change the rule, and it doesn't have to wait for the empires to enforce the rules - the stadium can enforce the rules, by noise, by flashing lights, by any means necessary, but essentially, by shame. As long as the stadium is enforcing the rules equitably, nobody would have anything to complain about - and the home team, if it was used to it, would already be operating with "internal clocks accustomed" to it. It would be a huge home-field advantage, at least in the short term.
   10. cardsfanboy Posted: November 11, 2021 at 09:34 PM (#6052612)
I was originally opposed to ANY talk of a pitch clock, but over the past 5-10 years or so, I've flipped completely. I do not see any issue with a 12-15 second clock when there is nobody on base. I mean zero problems there. It's when there are runners on base that it makes the discussion interesting, and even there, I think that they can come up with some way to enforce some type of action. It doesn't matter whether it's a pickoff or even taking the foot off the rubber, but something needs to be going on.

I love baseball, and a big part of that is the minute game within a game, so I don't want to take that away, but I do want to see those actions sped up.
   11. The Duke Posted: November 11, 2021 at 10:02 PM (#6052617)
5. I’m sorry. There is plenty of parking at Braves games. Some of it is not super close but there’s plenty of it. I had season tickets for the first few seasons and most of the lots further away don’t even get used. The walk to and from Turner from most parking lots was just as long.

Atlanta is a driving city - public transport is simply not a viable option. And just to be clear it wasn’t at Turner Field either. At Turner, you had to Marta to center of the city, walk 5 minutes, stand in line and wait for a city bus to the game. Reverse it on the way back. Not fun. What Truist does have is about 6-7 pathways to access the park from arterial roads which means the entire fanbase is not coming into the stadium via the same route whereas at Turner 75% of the cars had to access the park from the same highway exit.

And finally - poor people own/lease cars and drive. I’ve seen it with my own two eyes. I’m sure they can get to the games just like I did.
   12. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: November 12, 2021 at 05:22 AM (#6052630)
One of the few reforms I wholeheartedly favor. The single biggest problem baseball has, and problems #2-99 also, is pace of game. Time between pitches is the single biggest driver of that. And this is already on the books, so there can't even be a legitimate objection to it.

And in addition to what BBC said about the bizarre claim that "a lot of guys keep a pretty good pace already," let's call out this nonsense: "if a guy needs to step out and get the signs from the third base coach, there’s a lot of that communication and things that go on between pitches in a major league game." Batters do not "need" to step out and get the signs from the third base coach at all, especially with nobody on base.
   13. SoSH U at work Posted: November 12, 2021 at 07:54 AM (#6052637)
Batters do not "need" to step out and get the signs from the third base coach at all, especially with nobody on base.


Also, the only sign in modern baseball is, if you swing, swing as hard as you can.
   14. Jose is Absurdly Correct but not Helpful Posted: November 12, 2021 at 08:39 AM (#6052638)
I've been anti-clock for a long time but MLB isn't going to address the issue so now they've backed themselves into a corner. There is just no reason at all for routine 3-2 games to be 3 1/2 hour affairs. The problem really isn't the length of game it's the amount of dead time. When your partner networks are running ads DURING AT BATS you have too much dead time.
   15. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: November 12, 2021 at 09:47 AM (#6052647)
But I also want to make sure we think through how it affects the fielders, how it affects the batter, how it affects the catcher.


Exactly how much 'thinking' does this really require?
   16. Doug Jones threw harder than me Posted: November 12, 2021 at 10:25 AM (#6052658)
Exactly how much 'thinking' does this really require?


Yeah. It's both sad and infuriating that management & players seem paralyzed by this issue.
   17. and Posted: November 12, 2021 at 11:02 AM (#6052659)
The Duke is right about one thing: This is an easy problem to solve.

Therefore, you have to conclude that no one with any stake in the action wants to change it.
   18. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: November 12, 2021 at 11:15 AM (#6052664)
Therefore, you have to conclude that no one with any stake in the action wants to change it.
The dialogue has been pretty consistent - among those who acknowledge there is a problem, they are 100% on board with having other people change their behavior to fix it.
   19. and Posted: November 12, 2021 at 11:19 AM (#6052666)
Right, it's lip service. Which is what you do when people want you to do something you don't want to do.
   20. Tom Nawrocki Posted: November 12, 2021 at 11:37 AM (#6052670)
Manfred at least understands that pace of play is an issue, which is why the first serious rule change he implemented was waving the batter to first on an intentional walk. What I wonder is whether he was dumb enough to think that was going to make any difference, or whether he felt like he needed to make a cosmetic change to placate the critics.

A rigorously enforced pitch clock would also bring a lot of positive PR to the game and get people watching if only to see how things have changed. You'd get old-fart managers and compulsive batting-glove adjusters complaining about it, which would only being more attention to this new-fangled sped-up game.
   21. Doug Jones threw harder than me Posted: November 12, 2021 at 12:02 PM (#6052674)
A rigorously enforced pitch clock would also bring a lot of positive PR to the game and get people watching if only to see how things have changed.


Imagine, a marketing tactic! Come see Baseball as it meant to be played - quickly! Maybe if the A's won't listen because they just want to tank their attendance as a justification for a move, somebody innovative like the Rays or somebody desperate like the Pirates might bite. It just takes one Bill Veeck.
   22. Greg Pope Posted: November 12, 2021 at 01:11 PM (#6052681)
It just takes one Bill Veeck.

Do you really think that a team will do that to its own players?
   23. Doug Jones threw harder than me Posted: November 12, 2021 at 01:26 PM (#6052684)
Do you really think that a team will do that to its own players?


My contention is that it would be a competitive advantage. The team's players will get used to operating at a quicker pace, as is said above in #7, and then they will have an advantage over the visiting team.

I promise, after 1 month of play with the pitch clock....you won't even notice it and neither will the players. It fades into the background as the players internal clocks become accustomed


You might piss off some veterans, but for a team like the A's or the Pirates or whomever - usually they are giving some "cheap" veteran a chance to revitalize their career, anyhow. Things move fast these days, folks could adjust if they wanted to.
   24. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: November 12, 2021 at 01:30 PM (#6052686)
My contention is that it would be a competitive advantage. The team's players will get used to operating at a quicker pace, as is said above in #7, and then they will have an advantage over the visiting team.
I have to say, your belief in this idea seems a bit...misguided. What would really happen: The home team starts blaring horns or whatever after the visiting pitcher dicks around for 20 seconds. The visiting pitcher steps off the rubber and waits for the horns to stop. There is a delay as the ump passes along an order to stop the horns.
   25. Doug Jones threw harder than me Posted: November 12, 2021 at 01:56 PM (#6052695)
There is a delay as the ump passes along an order to stop the horns.


I'll agree that it might be a vain hope. Still there must be a way for a team to use increased pace as a competitive advantage. It may take some more thought to figure out how it could be done.
   26. Jose is Absurdly Correct but not Helpful Posted: November 12, 2021 at 02:06 PM (#6052697)
I'm pretty sure it is against the rules for any music/sound to be played when the batter is in the batters box and/or the pitcher is on the rubber.
   27. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: November 12, 2021 at 02:14 PM (#6052698)
I've had an idea for several years: I would pay for a ticket right behind home plate for a major national broadcast game, in constant view of the main CF camera. I would bring various signs with me, with lettering big enough to show up on TV: "THROW THE BALL." "YOUR BATTING GLOVES HAVE NOT LOOSENED SINCE THE LAST PITCH." etc. and display them as appropriate.
   28. Doug Jones threw harder than me Posted: November 12, 2021 at 02:28 PM (#6052703)
'm pretty sure it is against the rules for any music/sound to be played when the batter is in the batters box and/or the pitcher is on the rubber.


The team could put up lights or scoreboard prompts to get the fans to boo, though, I think. That would be legal.
   29. The Duke Posted: November 12, 2021 at 02:31 PM (#6052705)
Me, I just prefer low cut tops behind home plate but whatever floats you boat. Maybe you could combine them for maximum effect
   30. SoSH U at work Posted: November 12, 2021 at 02:36 PM (#6052706)
I'm sure Elroy would be willing to wear a crop top for you Duke.
   31. Jose is Absurdly Correct but not Helpful Posted: November 12, 2021 at 02:52 PM (#6052707)
The team could put up lights or scoreboard prompts to get the fans to boo, though, I think. That would be legal.


Not trying to be a dick but I almost added, the scoreboard, at least a centerfield scoreboard, isn't allowed to have moving images in those same situations.

I don't know if this is all still true (though it seems to be). In the late 80s a family friend who was a computer programming professor at Boston College did a lot of work with the Red Sox to upgrade their scoreboard programs. For my 18th birthday he gave me and some friends a tour of the press box and we got to mess around with that stuff as well as some of the cameras for NESN before a game. He told us all this information about what they had to be able to do with the push of a button.
   32. Doug Jones threw harder than me Posted: November 12, 2021 at 03:06 PM (#6052712)
Not trying to be a dick but I almost added, the scoreboard, at least a centerfield scoreboard, isn't allowed to have moving images in those same situations.


Right, but they could put some kind of sign that lights up (along with their "own" pitch clock) somewhere, say not in centerfield but maybe on each side, where many stadiums already have information like pitch speed, etc., and rolling information like stuff that says "Make Some Noise" or whatever. It could be done. People would be mad, but that's the point. Mike Veeck is still around, right? Put him on the case.
   33. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: November 12, 2021 at 03:21 PM (#6052715)
I'm sure Elroy would be willing to wear a crop top for you Duke.
I don't think I have so much chest hair that it would be distracting.
   34. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: November 12, 2021 at 03:23 PM (#6052716)
Right, but they could put some kind of sign that lights up (along with their "own" pitch clock) somewhere, say not in centerfield but maybe on each side, where many stadiums already have information like pitch speed, etc., and rolling information like stuff that says "Make Some Noise" or whatever. It could be done. People would be mad, but that's the point.
Yes, just like booing from the crowd shames pitchers into not making worthless pickoff throws.
   35. Ziggy: social distancing since 1980 Posted: November 12, 2021 at 03:52 PM (#6052721)
No guys, this is how you do it. Wait for some really important game, and tell your pitchers to stick to the pitch clock (since the rule is already on the books). Then, when the other team's pitcher mucks around on the mound without throwing a pitch, and doesn't get penalized for it, you inform the umpires that you are playing the game under protest, and will bring the matter up with the commissioner. For maximum effect, call into the press box and let them know what's up.
   36. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: November 12, 2021 at 03:58 PM (#6052723)
No guys, this is how you do it. Wait for some really important game, and tell your pitchers to stick to the pitch clock (since the rule is already on the books). Then, when the other team's pitcher mucks around on the mound without throwing a pitch, and doesn't get penalized for it, you inform the umpires that you are playing the game under protest, and will bring the matter up with the commissioner. For maximum effect, call into the press box and let them know what's up.
Right, because Manfred has the cojones to uphold that.
   37. Walt Davis Posted: November 12, 2021 at 04:42 PM (#6052731)
I look forward to the replay reviews of whether the pitcher's motion began at 19.95 seconds or 20.05 seconds.
   38. Doug Jones threw harder than me Posted: November 12, 2021 at 05:27 PM (#6052737)
look forward to the replay reviews of whether the pitcher's motion began at 19.95 seconds or 20.05 seconds.


Well, ideally it would be 11.95 or 12.05 seconds!

Probably the best analogy is football, where a whole lot more has to happen in 45 seconds before they hike the ball, and even though delay-of-game penalties are not that rare, I have yet to see an example where there was a replay review on a delay of game penalty. It would be in the best interest of the pitcher to stay far away from there being any danger of being penalized, and there really isn't any competing strategic interest like trying to get the play called, or players coming in or trying to get off the field, or trying to get the defense to jump offside. The pitcher just has to get a sign from the catcher and throw the ball.
   39. cardsfanboy Posted: November 12, 2021 at 08:29 PM (#6052746)
Manfred at least understands that pace of play is an issue, which is why the first serious rule change he implemented was waving the batter to first on an intentional walk.


That means he doesn't understand the pace of play is an issue. He thinks game time is the issue and is trying to fix that, instead of pace of play. The issue is absolutely pace of play, but to many people who argue about pace of play, put in the wrong arguments or facts into the discussion, and talk about game time, which is not necessarily a pace of play issue (it's a pace of play casualty though)

Seriously, an intentional walk has probably four pitches thrown in a shorter time span than a non-intentional walk two pitch sequence happens. I don't think that is even really a debate, so he's attacking a problem that isn't even a real problem, simply because it's a simple solution.
   40. cardsfanboy Posted: November 12, 2021 at 08:31 PM (#6052747)
you inform the umpires that you are playing the game under protest, and will bring the matter up with the commissioner.


Didn't they abolish the Protest last season?
   41. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: November 12, 2021 at 08:44 PM (#6052750)
he's attacking a problem that isn't even a real problem, simply because it's a simple solution.
My one hope, and it’s a faint one, is that Manfred has been waiting for the new CBA and not wanting to make the players moan and groan - which they will - before the negotiations. Maybe if they get a long-term deal in place, then he’ll exercise his power to make unilateral changes, hoping that the players will get over it by the time the agreement expires. But I really doubt it.
   42. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: November 12, 2021 at 10:52 PM (#6052766)
I agree with #39. And further evidence of the fact that Tom is wrong, and that Manfred misidentifies the problem as game length rather than game pace, is the ghost runner rule. That makes games shorter, but it does nothing about game pace.
   43. Doug Jones threw harder than me Posted: November 13, 2021 at 12:50 AM (#6052778)
Manfred misidentifies the problem as game length rather than game pace,


I am afraid you folks are right, and I find it hard to believe that Manfred is a complete idiot, and so it probably is something on the order of "look I'm doing something" when he believes he either cannot or does not want to do anything substantial. I also find it hard to believe that owners don't understand that pace is an issue. It really must come down to players - players have grown accustomed to playing this way, and realistically, because they individually have no ability to increase the pace of play, but can individually slow it down, the pace of play has continually self-selected slower. That is, players who thrive in a slower pace have succeeded, and players who don't have probably simply chosen other sports. It may be that only the owners (or an owner, if a version of my probably misguided idea could be implemented) can make the necessary changes, and only as part of a new CBA, which may not come easy.
   44. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: November 13, 2021 at 03:20 AM (#6052781)
39 and 42 yes, it’s weird when you give people more of your product for free (longer games, extra innings) and they complain! If your takeaway from that is not “we need to improve the quality of our product” but rather “we need to give people less of our product” then you’re missing the point...

(I love long extra inning games, FWIW.)
   45. and Posted: November 13, 2021 at 07:24 AM (#6052785)
40: See? That’s Manfred thinking 11 moves ahead.
   46. BDC Posted: November 13, 2021 at 07:48 AM (#6052786)
In fact, the zombie runner rule and the seven-inning doubleheaders seem geared to "shortening" games so that they can be played even slower in the same amount of time, if that makes sense, which it both does and doesn't. One continually hears concerns about not exhausting the pitchers by having the games go too many innings. But having them go four hours is fine if the pitchers get enough time between deliveries.

One factor in the indifference to pace must be that whatever the pace, live sports are still that unique thing where somebody is watching in real time, as opposed to whatever cooking or reality-competition show that viewers will just record and zap the commercials if they even do that sort of thing anymore, instead of just streaming every entertainment on demand. If 2-3 hours of a live sports event are good, four hours must be better even if fewer people are paying any attention; they are at least nominally tuned in.

And in-person attendance either doesn't matter as much anymore (the profit margin is slim, more fans mean more ushers etc.), or clubs are fine with people showing up for just the second-through-sixth innings and then leaving because they need some minimal amount of sleep even on a weekend.

So the incentives to picking up the pace consist only of pleasing a few baseball aesthetes on the Internet …
   47. Pat Rapper's Delight (as quoted on MLB Network) Posted: November 13, 2021 at 11:25 AM (#6052797)
Didn't they abolish the Protest last season?

Yes, I presume upon urging from The Official Gaming Partners of Major League Baseball™ because the infinitesimal chance of a protested game means they can't book their winnings immediately upon the game's conclusion. The rule on protests now reads:
7.04 Protesting Games
Protesting a game shall never be permitted, regardless of whether such complaint is based on judgment decisions by the umpire or an allegation that an umpire misapplied these rules or otherwise rendered a decision in violation of these rules.

Such is the state of the rule book under Future Hall of Famer Rob Manfred.... intentional walks that never happened, baserunners created out of the aether, and a section of the rule book dedicated to defining something that doesn't exist. The game is starting to tread on Calvinball territory here.
   48. Tom Nawrocki Posted: November 13, 2021 at 11:40 AM (#6052798)
In fact, the zombie runner rule and the seven-inning doubleheaders seem geared to "shortening" games so that they can be played even slower in the same amount of time, if that makes sense, which it both does and doesn't.


Bill James wrote something last year about how everyone who's working at a game - the players, the front office, the stadium workers, the umpires, etc. - hates long extra-inning games, for a variety of reasons. The zombie runner, he said, was primarily intended to address their concerns.

I think he's probably right, and this rule doesn't have anything to do with keeping the fans happy, or with what the fans want at all.
   49. Howie Menckel Posted: November 13, 2021 at 12:40 PM (#6052809)
It really must come down to players - players have grown accustomed to playing this way, and realistically, because they individually have no ability to increase the pace of play, but can individually slow it down, the pace of play has continually self-selected slower.

only a decade ago, the vast majority of putts missed on the PGA Tour that landed inside of 3 feet from the cup were immediately tapped in (the exceptions mainly being for extremely fast greens or a severe slope).

now, virtually every golfer under age 30 marks damn near everything, no matter how close. it's bizarre, as golfers of yore didn't miss these putts when they "failed" to mark them first, either.

it's strange and useless - and mildly time-consuming, and it does add up.

when Jordan Spieth famously won The British Open a few years back, the key shot by him on the back 9 of the final round was from way, way wide of the fairway. he wandered up and down the hilly course for a mere TWENTY MINUTES, from the area of his ball to the area of his target, before finally hitting the goddam shot (quite successfully).

now, the situation and the circumstances were so unusual that instead of hitting this shot in under one minute, one could justify as many as an extraordinary 10 minutes.

20? not so much.
   50. Tom Nawrocki Posted: November 13, 2021 at 01:23 PM (#6052819)
I agree with #39. And further evidence of the fact that Tom is wrong, and that Manfred misidentifies the problem as game length rather than game pace, is the ghost runner rule. That makes games shorter, but it does nothing about game pace.


Yeah, well, you guys are wrong. "Manfred doesn't care about pace because some things he does address length rather than pace" is not a very logically compelling stance. The first steps he took - not just the intentional walk but limiting mound visits and making noises about a pitch clock back in, what was it, 2019? - were specifically about addressing dead spots in the game.

Obviously, anything you do to improve pace is also going to cut down length. Just as obviously, the things he's done to address pace have been ineffectual. But that doesn't mean he's oblivious to the problem, just that he's incompetent.
   51. Jack Sommers Posted: November 13, 2021 at 01:40 PM (#6052825)
By the way, not sure if anyone noticed, but Click's response is one of the most reserved of the group.

The vast majority of GM's seem much more enthusiastic about it.

15 seconds with nobody on or just a runner on first. 20 second with a runner in scoring position.

Just do it already. I remember reading that Manfred had the ability to implement without union approval or agreement, but he didn't. I wonder if that will be the case in the next CBA
   52. cardsfanboy Posted: November 14, 2021 at 07:10 PM (#6052927)
Yeah, well, you guys are wrong. "Manfred doesn't care about pace because some things he does address length rather than pace" is not a very logically compelling stance. The first steps he took - not just the intentional walk but limiting mound visits and making noises about a pitch clock back in, what was it, 2019? - were specifically about addressing dead spots in the game.

Obviously, anything you do to improve pace is also going to cut down length. Just as obviously, the things he's done to address pace have been ineffectual. But that doesn't mean he's oblivious to the problem, just that he's incompetent.


I do think he understands pace of play is the problem, but he's too stupid or unwilling to fix the problem correctly. My point was that the rules he has implemented, do not one bit affect pace of play, they are designed to address game length. He has not shown any evidence that he understands how to approach pace of play issue.

As we have detailed on this site, numerous times, the single biggest factor on pace of play, and it's not even close, is time between pitches. It's not mid inning substitution, it's not intentional walks, it's not pick off attempts, it's absolutely beyond any debate, time between pitches. Yes reducing that will also reduce game length (simple math, reduce the average time between pitches by 3 seconds, results in roughly a 900 second reduction in game time, which is 15 minutes, bringing the average game time back to 90's level and under 3 hours) but that isn't the actual primary advantage, it increases fan interest by keeping them focused on the game.



I get that the three outcome game is not as interesting to watch as classic baseball, but three outcomes is still plenty interesting if you see a pitch every 10 to 15 seconds instead of 20-25. By near definition you will see an outcome every 2 minutes(barring 12 pitch at bats) of game time. There are roughly 70 - 90(52 minimum in a complete game over 120 in a slugfest) outcomes per game or roughly 2.33-3.00 hours to having something happen at maximum of once per 2 minutes and probably closer to once per minute on average is not far off of football's 30 second pace. (and of course football is fudging even there)



Edit: I'm not including commercial breaks of course, which adds 2.5 minutes (so that alone adds 42 minutes) per break....But the numbers I used above assume that all pa equal the maximum of two mminutes, when in even todays game that isn't happening.
   53. Ziggy: social distancing since 1980 Posted: November 14, 2021 at 08:09 PM (#6052928)
Now that they've figured out that they can get away with advertisements during at bats, and on the pitcher's mound, I'm afraid that they see a slow game as a good thing, regardless of what it does for fan interest.
   54. Tom Nawrocki Posted: November 14, 2021 at 08:55 PM (#6052930)
I do think he understands pace of play is the problem, but he's too stupid or unwilling to fix the problem correctly. My point was that the rules he has implemented, do not one bit affect pace of play, they are designed to address game length. He has not shown any evidence that he understands how to approach pace of play issue.


I agree with this (although I do think the limit on mound visits helps a little).

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