New Rules for 2020 for MLB

There have been some new rules in MLB this year. I don’t argue much because of the situation. I don’t see a problem with funky rules this year because of the sixty game regular season. I’m happy they are playing because it gives us some normality…a little we can all hold on to.

The rules were set for just this year because of what is going on but I know that Manfred sometimes wants to change for the sake of change…I guess to leave his mark… The rules are italicized in bold below and my responses are below each one. I’m sure some of you will disagree with me and that is fine…who ever reads this is probably passionate about the game…all opinions are welcomed.

Now to the rules…

1: Universal DH (No need for the official wording in this) – Ok all of you American League fans… I know that most of you like it and that is fine. I like it also…for the American League. Personally I don’t want to see this go past this year for the NL. I don’t understand why it’s so bad for the leagues to be different. I like the leagues different…at one time they had two sets of umpires…one for the AL and one for the NL… The reasons for and against doesn’t change but I have a feeling Manfred will try to pass this one. This one I don’t want to see change. I like ball parks all different and the leagues different…it separates baseball from the rigid normality of the other major sports…It’s ok to be different MLB.

2: Wet Rag- Pitchers will be permitted to carry a small wet rag in their back pocket to be used for moisture in lieu of licking their fingers. Pitchers will not be able to access the rag while on the rubber, and they must clearly wipe the fingers of their pitching hand dry before touching the ball or the rubber. Water is the only substance that will be allowed on the rag.

I don’t see a reason why this shouldn’t be in place for ever more. I want the pitchers that have 90 mph fastballs to have decent control. Yes I know someone will try to cheat the system… hey it’s baseball…but I don’t see this as a big problem.

3: Runner on second to begin extra innings
During the regular season, every half-inning after the ninth will begin with a runner on second base. If that runner scores, the pitcher won’t be charged with an earned run.

The runner placed on second base at the start of each half-inning will be the player in the batting order immediately preceding that half-inning’s leadoff hitter, or a pinch-runner. However, if the player in the batting order immediately preceding that half-inning’s leadoff hitter is the pitcher, the runner placed on second base may be the player preceding the pitcher in the batting order. This rule will not be in place for the postseason.

Over the past five years, 8.26% of all regular-season games have gone to extra innings. There were 208 extra-innings games in the 2019 regular season, counting for 8.56% of all games.

I thought this was a joke when I saw this rule… even for only this year.  I’ll quote Clayton Kershaw…”No, it’s not great, it’s Mickey Mouse garbage that belongs in the minor leagues and ONLY the minor leagues.” Is this really worth it for only 8.56% of the games? It’s not baseball and there should not be a valid reason to keep this. This reminds me of wiffle ball we played while we were younger…what’s next MLB? Ghost runners?

They say baseball is too long…have you ever watched a NFL game? They also can last 3 hours or more. Try watching the NBA in the last 2 mintues…you can raise a family in the time it takes them to finish it. This is the rule I disagree with the most…

4: Suspended games
If weather forces a game to be cut short before it is official, it will be continued at a later date rather than started from scratch.

I don’t mind this one at all… it makes sense to me. The famous game that comes to my mind is the George Brett pine tar game…they started that game when it ended…of course weather had nothing to do with that one.

5: Position players pitching
There will be no restrictions on position players pitching in 2020.

A rule change installed this past offseason would have required teams to designate every player on the active roster as either a pitcher or a position player, and position players would have been unable to pitch unless it was extra innings, their team was ahead or trailing by more than six runs, or they had qualified for the “two-way” designation. That rule won’t be in place during the 2020 season.

I think this should stand. If the player is alright with pitching under emergencies why not let him? If he is ok with it I don’t see a problem. Personally I like seeing some position player pitch…some like Russell Martin did really well. Yes they could get hurt but the player either says yes or no.

Ok this is just my two cents but the recent intentional walk rule. Why make it automatic and the batter go to first? I have seen pitchers make wild throws and games were decided because of it. I have seen pitchers fool the batter into thinking it was an intentional walk and strike them on a 3-2 count…and batters lean over and hit the ball…and who can forget the A’s fooling Johnny Bench with a fake intentional walk in the World Series?  This one doesn’t have anything to do with this year but I wanted to get it in.