Denny Sinnoh's "Akihabara Starlight"

baseball tobacco landscape

Major League Baseball is considering several new rule changes in order to “speed up the game”. These are currently being experimented with during Spring Training this year.

These are the proposed new rules … and some varying fan perspectives on them:

1. Hitters must keep at least one foot inside the batter’s box at all times, barring exceptions like foul balls, wild pitches, or if the umpire grants him time out.

“This one is actually funny. Have you seen these guys forget — then try to stretch one foot to the box? Does MLB have any idea how gay this looks? Don’t turn ballplayers into a moonwalking Michael Jacksons. Also, how about when a player really needs to make those deep, deep scratches down in the groin area — including inside the cup? I say let him walk another three feet away from the plate for a little privacy.”

2. Pitchers must throw a pitch within 20 seconds of receiving the ball. Clocks posted in each dugout will count down the 20 seconds.

“This is not much time at all to visualize the next pitch. Furthermore, pitchers will scarcely be able to question their own existential meaningless. The notion of the futility of our existence in a god-less university can hardly be grappled with in a twenty second time period. “Am I throwing the ball, or is the ball throwing me?” Philosophical musings on the mound will be severely curtailed under this new rule!”

3. There will be a maximum break between innings of 2:05, with a clock keeping track. Hitters must be in the batter’s box by 1:45. If the hitter’s not ready, the umpire can call a strike. If the pitcher doesn’t throw a pitch by 2:05, the umpire can call a ball.

“Does not allow enough time for players like CC Sabathia, Prince Fielder, etc. to attend — let alone load up — at the inter-inning buffet.”

4. Teams will have a maximum of 2:30 to change pitchers, with the clock starting as soon as the reliever enters the playing field.

“What if the visiting bullpen is in the middle of verbal and physical confrontation with the home fans? Not enough time to be properly heckled.  This is not nearly enough time for fans to accumulate enough stadium debris to pummel upon the incoming reliever!”

5. Teams are limited to a maximum of three mound visits per game, not including pitching changes. This applies to trips to the mound by managers, coaches, and catchers.

“I think that this rule will deeply undermine the sanctity of Pitcher-Catcher relationships. Sure, they may still maintain the physicality of their relationship – but what about the deep emotional bonding? Can the tender feelings between pitcher and catcher be fully explored in this amount of time?  These intimate relationships need time to develop, otherwise Pitcher and Catcher will begin to feel that they are only “going through the motions”.  Yes, physically they may be good together – but are they really, truly communicating on a deep emotional level?”

6. Pitchers no longer have to deliver four balls for an intentional walk. The manager can simply signal to the umpire.

“This will anger the Baseball Gods! How many times has a wild pitch occurred in this situation which advanced the runners! Then there was the famous episode where a team pretended to intentionally walk a batter when the ball count to become 3-1, then proceeded to throw two strikes for the out.  Really, this rule may also lead to too much “micro-managing” from the dugout.”

 … I can think of some other changes I would want to make.

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My advice: MLB, please do not approve these travesties of the game.

I say, bring back something like the old “Nickel Beer Night” they used to have at Cleveland Stadium if fans want to experience a shorter, but more exciting evening.

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