Friday, September 9, 2022

MLB Announces Rules Changes for 2023 - A Review

Major League Baseball announced the following rules changes for its 2023 season, including a ban on infield shifts, bigger bases, pitch clocks, and pickoff/disengagement limits. MiLB has been used as a testing ground for several of these new rules, and Baseball now believes it is time to bring them to the MLB level.

(Effective) Ban on Infield Shifts: This rule requires that all four infielders—defined as the first baseman, second baseman, shortstop, and third baseman, for the purpose of this rule—begin play with both feet within the infield and on their proper side of the infield. This effectively eliminates a shortstop's ability to begin play on the second base side of the field, or on the outfield grass, etc.

Bigger Bases: MLB's 15 inches square bases will increase in size to 18 inches square (home plate retains the same dimensions), which should assist in both offense (stolen bases) and safety, giving batter-runners and first basemen more room to peacefully co-exist without stepping on each-other's feet...Manny.

Pitch Clocks: The pitch clocks are finally a Major League reality starting in 2023. Even though stadiums have had clocks ever since Replay Review time limits and Inning-Break timers were introduced, the pitch clock will introduce a 30-second timer between batters, 20-second timer with runners on base, and 15-second timer with the bases empty.

The batter must be in the box and alert to the pitcher by the eight-second mark on the clock (penalty: automatic strike) while the pitcher must begin a motion to deliver the pitch (or pickoff attempt) by the zero-second expiration of time (penalty: automatic ball). There is also a limit of two "free" disengagements (pickoff attempts/step-offs) during each plate appearance, with a penalty for the third disengagement a one-base award for any baserunners (exception: if the pickoff throw retires the runner, then the out shall prevail and there is no penalty).

What do you think of these new rules for MLB? | Video as follows:


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