One of the great things about sports in America is that we don’t often allow games to end in a tie. We might go 18 innings in a World Series game that literally drains your team for the rest of the series, but we’re not ending in a tie. MLB might be looking to change that in 2020.
USA Today reported on a number of potential rule changes coming to the 2020 season designed to shorten up games and keep players healthy. MLB and the player’s union reportedly agreed to change the extra innings rule to mirror that of the minor leagues. That would mean in extras, teams would start with runners on second base. This would revert back to normal rules during playoffs.
Cover your eyes baseball traditionalists: If #MLB and the union reach an agreement, they will consider having lengthy extra inning games ending in a tie, and have agreed to start extra innings with a runner on second base. https://t.co/ZxzGzoFpDf via ?@USATODAY?
— Bob Nightengale (@BNightengale) June 19, 2020
In that particular situation, the runner on second would be the last out from the previous inning. Slowpitch softball players in California might know this as a “California tiebreaker” as it is a common solution to extra innings in tournaments. So I guess MLB and slowpitch softball will indeed have something in common.
Baseball purists have had to take a deep breath throughout all of this, with plenty of rumored changes coming to MLB. If you’re already adding in ties and universal designated hitters, hopefully there isn’t much more they have to change about the game we love. But, whatever it takes to get baseball going again.