MLB Proposes 3-Batter Minimum For Pitchers

The potential rule change was part of discussions between MLB and the MLBPA.

February 06, 2019 - 11:34 am
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(670 The Score) In its ongoing efforts to accelerate the pace of play, Major League Baseball has proposed a rule that would require a three-batter minimum for pitchers, Ken Rosenthal of the Athletic reported

The proposal came on Jan. 14 as part of discussions between MLB and the the MLB Players Association, which responded to the league's request with its own proposals last week. Those included a universal designated hitter beginning in 2019 and lowering of a team's draft position if it doesn't reach a certain amount of wins in a certain time frame over the course of seasons.

A three-batter minimum would be designed to reduce the number of game interruptions with mound visits and pitching changes, particularly later in a game. However, it would also diminish the specialty roles that certain relievers fill out of the bullpen.

If no agreement is reached between the two sides, commissioner Rob Manfred is empowered by the current collective bargaining agreement to implement rules that he previously proposed, which according to Rosenthal include a 20-second pitch clock, reducing mound visits from six to five and a new rule that would start a baserunner at second base after the 10th inning during exhibitions like spring training and the All-Star Game.