Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

Despite formally being in office for less than a month, new Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred has been quick at work. He wrote a letter to the fans outlining some of his goals as commissioner, and proposed changing to a Super-Bowl like bidding process for the MLB All-Star Game.

Also expected to change under Manfred’s watch are pace-of-play rules in an attempt to accelerate the speed at which games are played. While implementing pitch clocks and instituting new baserunning rules have garnered plenty of attention, a new change may have a larger impact on baseball.

According to Jeff Passan of Yahoo! Sports, MLB will consider changing the size of the strike zone as early as the 2016 season:

Major League Baseball is considering altering the textbook definition of the strike zone for the first time in nearly two decades, fearful that the proliferation of the low strike has sapped too much offense from the game, league sources told Yahoo Sports.

The MLB Playing Rules Committee, which must approve any change made to the MLB rulebook, is expected to keep a watchful eye on the strike zone this season and how it affects the amount of runs scored per game.

Whether or not the strike zone should be completely blamed is debatable, but stats reveal the average runs scored per game has declined every year since 2006. The 4.07 runs per game in 2014 is the lowest scoring average in MLB since 1981.

The fact that, best case scenario, this change could increase scoring by a fraction of one run makes it seem like a small change. But considering the decline in baseball viewership in recent years, along with the increased interest in the NFL and NBA — two leagues on the vanguard of change to appease fans — it could be beginning of something bigger.

[divide]

Brandon McCarthy Discusses Being Part Of The Dodgers Organization

7 Responses

  1. larryball

    Baseball needs no changes – It’s a perfect game as it is – It’s only the post modern, techno addicted fanatics who need the modifications.

    Reply
  2. Taylor Rose

    Pitching is one of the most important positions in this great game and you wanna make it harder to do? Maybe just maybe there are more athletic defenders in todays game and as a result less runs are being scored?? Im sure there is a stat out there for it but please just leave the game alone. Increase viewership by marketing and in game features that involve the players. Maybe a catcher cam and then a shortstop cam for separate innings, bring a Point of view aspect to the game and maybe just maybe people will be more interested in what is kinda a boring game, unless you like to watch PITCHING! 🙂 Baseball is almost here guys, smells gooooodddd

    Reply
  3. Alex

    How exactly does a high scoring game make the game shorter?

    Reply
  4. SLONomad

    I can just see it now…. 10 years from now every new hitting record will be noted as “… during the small strike zone era”

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.