Saturday, 23 June, 2018

Major league notebook: MLB places limits on player visits to mound

MLB's Pace-of-Play Rules Can't Come Soon Enough MLB puts a limit on mound visits per game
Isabel Fisher | 21 February, 2018, 09:15

Rangers manager Jeff Banister said: "We get certain rules and it's my job to play within the context of those rules".

"I like the fact that every time we've engaged on something new, there's been conversation, in-depth conversation, with everyone involved", Hurdle said. They can throw as many as possible in the time allotted, and that's it.

On Monday, the league announced rule changes for the 2018 season meant to increase the speed of play and shorten games.

After more than a year of negotiations, the Major League Baseball Players Association refused to agree to the changes but also signed an agreement that it will not oppose the rules. Manfred said the pace of play this season will determine if those items are implemented in 2019.

"If you're really like stealing signs from up top with the video and transmitting them somehow in that nanosecond you'd be more concerned", Maddon said. "It's a pain. Ruins the rhythm of the game, for us and the fans". "It's just the nature of the beast". These rule changes have been in the works for weeks, so the announcement was not a surprise. Managers Bob Melvin of the A's and Bruce Bochy of the Giants were in the process of reviewing the rules.

I have been at countless Cleveland Indians games where a mound visit sets some into a frenzy, declaring the game to be too long.

"I've said for two or three years that's one of the biggest reasons the games have slowed down", he said from Scottsdale Stadium.


Frankly, I can't see the umps - well, maybe Angel Hernandez - denying a visit for that goal since he doesn't want to get hit by an unexpected pitch himself, but that could be an opportunity for savvy batteries to "game" the system by feigning a "cross up" situation. They go to the mound. If the catcher goes to the mound, it counts as a visit. "It's a good thing to limit visits".

Should a team exceed the six-visit limit, but it appears as if its pitcher and catcher are in a "cross-up", the catcher can request an extra mound visit, which the umpire can approve or deny.

Mound visits after an offensive substitution. Same with an infielder. For instance, Major League Baseball announced the "home plate umpire may, upon request of the catcher, allow the catcher to make a brief mound visit" if the umpire believes a cross-up between the pitcher and catcher occurred. For any extra-innings played, each Club shall be entitled to one additional non-pitching change mound visit per inning.

The conclusion that slightly shorter game times automatically equal more fans in the seats fails when the data jumps around so much from year to year.

If a catcher gets "crossed up" with the signs... he calls for a curve and gets the express, for instance... we usually see a mound visit to get that sorted.

I'm sorry, but that's not the game of baseball I grew to know and love.

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