The Rockies’ reactions are mixed as MLB adopts pitch clock and shift limits for 2023

Major League Baseball will undergo a seismic shift in the rules for the 2023 season after Friday’s vote to implement a pitch clock and ban defensive shifts, all in an effort to speed up the pace of the game and increase movement.

The Rockies have mixed feelings about the future of baseball.

“We’ll see how things turn out,” said third baseman Ryan McMahon. “That’s what they decided to do. It would be fun, no doubt.”

Manager Bud Black added: “Overall, I’m fine with it. But I think the pitch watch would require a major adjustment.”

The MLB Competition Committee, made up of six ownership representatives, four players and one referee, agreed to:

– Pitch clock for 15 seconds with empty bases and 20 seconds with contestants.

Defensive alignment includes two players on each side of the second base bag with both feet on the dirt.

– A rule that determines the number of take-off movements.

– Expand the size of the bases from 15 to 18 square inches, with the idea that larger bases will reduce collisions around the bag with a slight shortening of the space between the bases.

Defensive turnarounds are becoming commonplace, with three players moving to the right side of second base, with one often positioned on a shallow field to the right, and left-handed hitters stealing key hits more often.

The number of turnovers has grown exponentially over the past decade, from 2,357 hits in play in 2011 to 28,130 in 2016 and 59,063 last year, according to Sports Info Solutions. Transformations are on track for 68,000 this season.

Next season, with all four players needing dirt when throwing the pitch, the players’ “rover” days are over.

McMahon, who used to be a full-time second hitter and is a left-handed hitter, can see both sides of the argument.

“As a hitter, I’m excited about the changes,” he said. “When you hit the ball hard, past the first line of defense, you want to be rewarded.

“But as a defender, (the shift) has helped us undo a lot of wasting. So we will see how it goes.”

“We will see a lot of singles from left-handed hitters,” Black said. “A lot of singles to attract left-handed hitters.”

McMahon believes skill and athleticism at base two will become more of a priority.

“With the shift and all the players on the move, you didn’t have to put the best defenders out there,” he said. “You could have had guys who were just put in there to get out. But I think it would help us because we have some good athletes.”

Second baseman Brendan Rodgers said, “I’m not going to affect me too much, although I’ll probably play more straight next year. So we’ll have to get new (field) charts and work on them next spring.”

The court game, tested in the minor leagues, speeds up significantly when it is enforced, reducing the average ninth-half time in minors from 3 hours 4 minutes in 2021 to 2:38 this season. The average time for a nine-game match in the majors this year is 3:06. In 1989, it was 2:46 in 1989, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.

There will be a strict set of rules in place in the big companies next season: the catcher must be in position when the timer reaches 10 seconds, the batter must be two feet in the batter box and be “alert” at the 8 second mark and the bowler must His “move to the throw” begins with the clock’s end. If the bowler violates the rule, a machine ball is called. If the hitter is not ready, an automatic hit will be delivered.

Commissioner Rob Manfred has long been an advocate of changing the rules to speed up the game.

Manfred said in a statement.

However, Black expects the pitch clock will make some shooters uncomfortable, at least at first.

“My sense of this is that the little bit premeditated guys are already thinking they’re going to have to hurry up,” Black said. “They’re already thinking about it.”

Black added that during next year’s Cactus League matches during spring training, “we’ll be with our guys about it.”

Also starting next season, shooters will be limited to two attempts or rubber steps per plate appearance, something the MLB calls a disengagement. A refusal will be prompted for the infringement unless there is an exit. The disengagement limit will be reset if the runner progresses.

Although the changes were approved by the league’s competition committee, the vote was unanimous. Player representatives voted “no” to the shift intervals and the court clock.

The panel includes Seattle owner John Stanton, St. Louis owner Bill DeWitt, Boston owner Tom Werner, San Francisco owner Greg Johnson, Rockies owner Dick Monfort, Toronto president Mark Shapiro, Tampa Bay pitcher Tyler Glasno, St. Louis pitcher Jack Flaherty, Toronto companion player Witt Murrayfield, San Francisco player Austin Slater, and referee Bill Miller.

The Associated Press contributed to this report

Leave a Comment