MLB set to move minor league second base closer to pitcher’s mound
II’ve grown tired of portraying baseball and the things in it and just outside of it, as a hard shell. But it didn’t stop me from getting annoyed about some of the topics MLB discussed to try and liven up the game. I hate the extended playoffs. I don’t mind DH in NL anymore, even though I used to be a thinker. I hate the idea of banning shifts, but love a yard watch. Maybe it’s time for me, along with everyone else, to stop picking and choosing and just see what happens to all of them.
Perhaps my fear is that once something is introduced into any sport, it often becomes entrenched. That’s why I’m living through 3v3 overtime and penalty shootouts in hockey even though they don’t make any logical sense. The Manfred Man runner in the extra innings is still with us (not the ghost runner, as there is an actual live one, in 2nd to start the 10th. Except those times it was Albert Pujols). So any rules that change you or I don’t like, or minor trials will eventually progress to majors, when they get there, they’re more likely to stick than just pop up. aired for a season or two and then disappeared.
However, my ears were still perched today when MLB announced that, in the minors zone in the second half of the season, the second base would be moved closer to the pitcher’s mound, and thus which is closer to the first and third bases. I never really thought that second base wasn’t actually 90 feet away from its compatriots, but Jayson Stark does one excellent job in explaining why it’s not hereand what will this change do. Reading it will make you wonder why it took 150 years to think about it. Baseball just moves slower, but the flashbacks and nightmares about geometry class come much faster when reading Stark’s paper.
The obvious outcome, or the outcome MLB is hoping for, is poaching. One foot doesn’t seem like much, only 1 percent of the distance. And you’ve seen enough thefts that try to end up in bang-bang plays to know that transferring a bunch of captured thefts into stolen bases doesn’t take much more than a small change. Combined with the larger soles basically brings the soles towards the runner and the runner out of the glove trying to apply the tag and it’s clear that baseball wants more green lights on the game lines.
And these changes… what harm can it do? At least to see? It’s not likely that we’ll go back to the ’80s and teams like the Cardinals run wild in every half of every game (to the point where field teams will water their yards to the point of mud to try to stop them). block them). Players are no longer honed by minors honing their stealing instincts, so it may take time for this type of change to really bear fruit, as players work their way past the kids. Minors worked more when the runways were open.
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And baseball needs more action. Stolen Bases is action-packed and showcases many skills that we don’t see much of these days. Hell, the bigger bases are basically against Javy Baez. But it’s not just the actions of the stolen bases, the game can use more of them. There is always a bit of arrogance and showiness to a player stealing a base, no matter how hard the pitcher and catcher try not to let them do so. It was shooting through a pair-team or pass a pass through baseball’s double coverage. It’s no coincidence that the baseball team steals King, Rickey Henderson, is also perhaps its greatest character.
However, this doesn’t really solve baseball’s biggest problem, which is that there aren’t enough first place guys trying to get second right now. The single person has suffered a wheezing death over the course of the past decade. Last year, there were 25,006 singles in the MLB season. Compare that to 2015, when the number was 28,016. Or 2011 when it was 28,418. That’s a 12% decline over 10 years. Your instinct is to say that the walks have been replaced by walks, but only five percent of walks have increased in the same amount of time (all numbers from Fangraphs).
But as part of the package…for sure. The prohibited by shift meant to promote more singles, although it’s hard to know how many drive lines past the spot where the second baseman once stood that is now captured will be saved. Preliminary evidence suggests that it may not make much of a difference.
But the problems baseball faces probably need a lot of answers. Maybe some of the greats would be willing to accept singles instead of swapping Poughkeepsie if they knew they had a better chance of taking second and third place. The pitch meter can reduce the velocity enough for more exposure. Maybe one day they’ll actually figure out what to do with baseball and sticky stuffsadly they are miles away.
The NBA needed a three-second hand and defense check to open up its game. Football needs a combination of passes-change the intervention rules and what the DB can do at the line and for how long. Hockey continues to grapple with the size of goalkeepers’ equipment and prevent interference through various methods. It is first held and grasped. Then it was hooked up. Now it is cross-checking. There is never a magic bullet.
And baseball would have found a better environment for these changes if assholes like me hadn’t gotten themselves wet when something they didn’t like was suggested. There’s no question that baseball needs help, and the problems have gone so deep that it shouldn’t be ruled out or tested. I can show what can hurt and what can go wrong. But more than enough was wrong to leave baseball alone. At this point, it’s deep enough in the “Why not?” really must be the attitude that spreads among players, teammates and fans.