Saturday, July 7, 2018


Source: Mike Carlson/Getty Images North America
Several months ago, I wrote a piece about how all this tinkering with an American tradition was hurting the game of baseball. You can check out that read here. This need for speeding up the game is frankly getting out of hand. A little background: It seems that for years now, the Commissioner’s office has been pushing for game times to be shorter, and because of this, the game we know and love is rapidly changing. Whether it be the pitch clock, the no-pitch intentional walk, or the developmental rule of starting with a runner on 2B in extra innings, the game is being manually changed to increase its pace, and presumably lack of constant action.

Source: Mike Carlson/Getty Images North America

There comes a time when these rules push the envelope too far:

Exhibit A- the runner on second in extras.

Exhibit B- Pace of Play, this being a more recent development at least in Yankeeland. Just last week, Brett Gardner was fined $3,500 for “taking too long” to reach the batter’s box from the on-deck circle. Gardy, was rightfully angry and outspoken by the fine, and so am I.

Source: Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images North America

“I've got more things to worry about than taking three seconds too long to get to the box. Somebody else can [throw pickoff throws to first base] 27 times in a game and waste 15 minutes of everybody's time, and I get fined thousands of dollars taking three seconds too long to get in the box," reported ESPN.

Source: Greg Fiume/Getty Images North America

Not only is the League attempting to speed up the games, they’re now punishing players for not speeding up their pre-AB and pitch routines. “Baltimore's Adam Jones is one of those holdouts, as he reported on an episode of MLB Now that he was fined almost $50,000 by the league for his inability to embrace pace of play rules,” as published by bloggers from 12-Up and reported by ESPN. There could be countless others being fined for this as apparently MLB does not disclose these numbers or identify the players being fined.

Source: The Lending Coach

Growing up a baseball player you are taught by your coaches to take your time in the batter’s box, to get yourself in a routine, and make yourself comfortable when you come up to bat. These players have developed their routine for years to get them to the Bigs, and being rushed causes them to underperform, and in extreme cases, get injured.


As a baseball player myself I find this collection of rule changes and fines outlandish, irritating, and most importantly harmful to the game. These players should be worried about improving themselves, and getting the job done at the plate to help their team win the ballgame. Timing how long they have to walk to the plate shouldn’t even be something they have to worry about as Gardy profoundly said.


As someone who is entering the entertainment industry I find these rule changes even more upsetting. Networks fight and negotiate millions of dollars for the rights to air these games live. Baseball is a long game, there’s no denying that. It’s not as rapid and action-oriented as football, or as fast-paced and developing as basketball; and because of this, viewership is down. The networks see a long game as negative return on investment, therefore pushing the league for changes to speed up the game. 

Source: 2nd Annual Northwoods Baseball Classic

Baseball is a game that has lasted the test of time, until apparently now. Is this where we as fans roll over and let the league and the networks ruin the integrity of the game? I sure hope not, because if there’s no push back now, in a few years I guarantee there will be a game clock; I’m talking 9 innings, or 3 hours, whatever comes first. Good for Gardy for speaking up and standing up for the game. Leave the game alone.

--Chris Carbonaro 
BYB Writer 
Twitter: @Carbs_ 

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