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fletch44

2020 Rule Changes (3 batter minimum, DH in NL, etc.)

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On 12/16/2019 at 4:06 PM, posty said:

The three batter minimum rule is right up there with adding the DH...

It is like the commissioner is trying to kill baseball...


It’s one of the dumber rules ever created.  Baseball has a few on the Mount Rushmore of dumb ideas 

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You know what else will speed up the game?  Less commercials.  Outs.  Less innings.

Having some guy wear a 5 ER outing ain’t speeding anything up

It won’t take long before guy fake injuries.  

Edited by kidtwentytwo
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On 12/13/2019 at 10:42 AM, 2ndCitySox said:

The fake injury thing is likely to happen in key situations. I wonder how mlb will manage that?

It would be easy to stop by making the pitcher unavailable for 7 days if he is removed early "due to injury". Or just force teams to DL the player. 

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Ben Clemens, Fangraphs: The Three Batter Minimum Rule Barely Matters

Quote

The concept of one-out pitchers suggests a kind of dystopian future for baseball. Generic Matchup Righty Number One (let’s call him Adam Cimber for the sake of this sentence) comes in to get the first out of an inning. He’s replaced by Adam Kolarek to get a lefty, then Adam Ottavino to get another righty, and then, look, I’m out of Adams, but maybe Adam Wainwright was the starter?

In any case, it’s hard to imagine a more boring inning, a more surefire way to get Johnny and Jane Millennial to change the channel to Fortnite or American Gladiators or whatever it is the kids like these days. That, more or less, is the theory behind MLB’s newest rule change, a three batter minimum for relief pitchers that will go into effect for the 2020 season. The rule requires a pitcher to face three batters, or pitch to the end of the half-inning, with some exceptions for injuries.

There’s only one problem with that narrative: that all-Adam inning doesn’t exist much in the majors, even without a three batter minimum. In fact, the one-out relief specialist just isn’t much of a role in baseball anymore. I investigated the numbers to find out which teams would be most affected. To my surprise, essentially none of them were. [...]

Alright, Oliver Pérez might need to find a new job in 2020; on the other hand, he also made 48 appearances that don’t fall into this framework, so maybe not. But for the most part, there’s no one on a roster solely to get one or two batters out. There are pitchers who do it from time to time, sure; as long as opposite-handed pitchers are at a disadvantage, managers will try to optimize their matchups.

But 21 appearances of Olly Pérez doesn’t figure meaningfully into the sum total of all the baseball played this year. There were only 489 appearances that fit these criteria last season. There were 2,190 games in my sample, which means that a now-disallowed short-stint reliever figured into about a quarter of last year’s contests. Budget two minutes for the extra pitching change, and that’s around 30 seconds saved per game. Not exactly getting that millennial audience back, now, are we?

Of course, even if the rule isn’t a big time saver, it could still make sense if it’s interesting strategically. Will getting rid of these (mostly) left-handed relievers lead to interesting strategic binds?

For the most part, I believe the answer is no. [...]

So in the end, is it worth it? Honestly, I can see arguments from both sides. It’s a tiny change that won’t affect competitive balance but will save a few minutes every couple games. You’ll definitely notice it the first time it happens, but it might fade into the background after that, because teams let pitchers face bad platoon matchups all the time; this simply tilts things a little more in the batting team’s favor.

But from a theoretical standpoint, I dislike how inelegant the rule is. For a narrow benefit (30 seconds and some tiny sliver of runs per game), the league is junking up the rulebook. And not with something like a slide rule, where you’re not allowed to headhunt, either — with an arbitrary constraint on a central rule of baseball — whoever you want to pitch can pitch as long as they haven’t already appeared in the game.

So next year, the first time you see a big spot where a specialist reliever doesn’t come in, by all means marvel at it. But by June, you will have forgotten, and baseball will roll on just like it always has, only with a new flourish in the rules where none previously existed.

 

(emphasis mine)

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2 hours ago, tonycpsu said:

 

One thing to note about the sample of times it happened is that MLB also increased the roster size to 26 players. So theoretically, given the extra arm in the pen, a manager will have the ability to do one out stints more often. If managers had more guys in the one batter appearances would go up. It only is not so high now because starters don't go deep so the bullpen needs to be conserved.

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I hope that there are a lot of "injuries" for this three batter minimum (or end of inning) rule...

Won't be able to prove there isn't a pinched nerve or a hurt muscle...

I hope it gets abused so the game lasts longer and MLB will kill this stupid rule...

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I think the 26th roster spot is more interesting than the relief pitcher rule, and I'm intrigued to see how teams use that space.

One possibility is that since extremely specialized RP will be less useful, teams are more likely to use their extra spot on another position player, allowing for more platooning. Offenses now have the advantage in late-inning games of cat-and-mouse - if they bring in an LHP to face your string of lefties, you can pinch hit with a bunch of righties and they can't react (which is dumb, but it's the rule now).

But another is the continued erosion of the traditional SP role. We've already seen the use of openers, bullpen days, etc. One more pitcher on the roster could further reduce the need for someone throwing 5+ IP every day, and maybe teams stack 3-4 pitchers each throwing 2-3 IP, or other weird combinations.

Edited by SpartyOn4

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didn't read all the comments so not sure if someone mentioned but the first thing that came to mind is not all these jacka$$ managers are going to force the r/l/r/l lineup. 

 

edit - nvm just read sparty comment above ha

Edited by colepenhagen

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On 12/13/2019 at 1:56 PM, FantasyGeek2018 said:

i dont care if a game takes 4 hours. dont change the way its played. if 4 hours is too long for some then go do whatever it is u want.

This is such a bad take. Mlb has constantly changed rules for well over 100 years when teams try to get a little too cute. There is a reason bunting foul with 2 strikes is an out now. Just as an example, there is no difference between saying a batter can't constantly foul of pitches to tire out a pitcher or wait for a perfect pitch and saying you can't change pitchers every batter. When you try to exploit a loophole, mlb has closed that loophole. LOOGYs are new. Not MLB cracking down on exploiting rules.

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1 hour ago, Bigfische said:

This is such a bad take. Mlb has constantly changed rules for well over 100 years when teams try to get a little too cute. There is a reason bunting foul with 2 strikes is an out now. Just as an example, there is no difference between saying a batter can't constantly foul of pitches to tire out a pitcher or wait for a perfect pitch and saying you can't change pitchers every batter. When you try to exploit a loophole, mlb has closed that loophole. LOOGYs are new. Not MLB cracking down on exploiting rules.

Bad logic...Batters can foul off 25 pitches if they are able to and still stay in the batters box. Maybe they will make a rule to screw the game up even more and add that if you foul off 5 pitches you are out also.

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20 hours ago, FantasyGeek2018 said:

Bad logic...Batters can foul off 25 pitches if they are able to and still stay in the batters box. Maybe they will make a rule to screw the game up even more and add that if you foul off 5 pitches you are out also.

Bunt

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DH coming to NL in the future is already having ramifications. Donaldson getting 4 year contracts from NL teams can just DH him in 2 years. The DH will also end the need for pinch hitters and pinch runners giving the 26 man lineup 12 position players and 14 pitchers. A second catcher a couple of utility guys and u are set.

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I still can't believe that they are really going to try this three-batter minimum pitching rule if they don't end the inning...

I really hope that it fails miserably...  This rule is right up there with the designated hitter, outlawing home plate collisions and instant replay in my opinion...

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Surprised nobody has brought up that MLB is going back to a 15 Day Injured List, up from 10. That will limit teams (in particular the Dodgers) from using the DL as a means to skip an SP once in the rotation to let him rest.

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People are saying teams might try to skirt the pitchers needing to face a minimum of 3 batters rule by faking injures.  

So sick of the cheating b.s.  Hey managers.  How about playing by the [...] rules?

Edited by tonycpsu

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Nothing necessarily actionable here just yet, but an interesting story to follow this season:

New Pickoff Rule Coming To Minors After Indy Ball Success In 2019

Quote

Major League Baseball is in the final stages of finalizing a plan that will change pickoff rules for a significant portion of the minor leagues.

Two farm directors confirmed that they have been told that when the 2020 season begins, MiLB pitchers will be required to step off the rubber before they can throw to a base on a pickoff attempt. As such, the new rule will eliminate the Andy Pettitte-style pickoff move where a lefty hangs on his back leg before either stepping toward first base and throwing over or stepping toward home to pitch. Inside moves at second base are also prohibited by the rule change.

Deciding at which levels the rule will be enforced has not been finalized, although the expectation is that it will at least cover Class A and below, and it is possible it will include Double-A. The Florida State League is set to use automated ball-strike calls (ABS) at a majority of its parks for 2020, and there is some thought that the pickoff rule is at least tangentially related to ABS.

[...]

In the Atlantic League last year, the pickoff rule change did lead to a dramatic increase in stolen base attempts. Stolen bases attempts went from 1.03 per game in the first half of the season before the rule change to 1.69 per game in the second half of the season with the rule change. The success rate also increased. Atlantic League basestealers were successful 75 percent of the time in the first half and 81 percent of the time in the second half.

[...]

Double plays also dropped from .82 per game to .63 per game with the new rules. According to coaches in the Atlantic League, runners could almost always get enough of a lead to make it much harder to turn two on anything other than a ball hit right at an infielder.

 

I love this, and setting the fantasy implications aside for a moment, would love to see it make its way to the bigs in some form.  Steals are among the most exciting plays in baseball, so as sound as the analysis is that's led to the decline of the running game, something has to be done to push the balance more toward the runner.  The increases in steals and decreases in double plays might not be quite as drastic in the bigs with more talented MLB fielders, but even a little nudge in the direction of the runner could add excitement to a game that desperately needs it with balls in play declining so much.

As for the fantasy implications, a more natural balance between HR and SB would be a welcome improvement to the rotisserie game.  Right now, fantasy players are either forced to overpay for speed with other categories in the early rounds and hope those guys don't get hurt, or forced to spend middle round picks on pure speed plays that are such bad hitters that they get moved down in lineups and eventually lose their jobs.  Having a larger population of players stealing an appreciable number of bags would help eliminate this distortion without devaluing the elite speedsters who can also do things with a bat in their hand.

Given how much MLB has been instituting new rules lately, I see a good chance of this becoming a thing in 2021.  If so, I could see some significant hits to the value of speed-only guys in the near future.

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10 hours ago, tonycpsu said:

Given how much MLB has been instituting new rules lately, I see a good chance of this becoming a thing in 2021.  If so, I could see some significant hits to the value of speed-only guys in the near future.

 

I'd think the opposite. A guy like Mallex Smith might be able to increase his total by a huge amount. Will the low steal guys really steal much more? Hard to tell.

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13 minutes ago, Sidearmer said:

Will the low steal guys really steal much more? Hard to tell.

 

I guess it depends on what you mean by 'low steal".  My thinking was that a move like this could bring a lot of players past the break-even point for success rate, to the point where you can get a more value from 4 or 5 category production from a modest boost in SBs from multiple guys in your lineup than from a 1 category jump from a guy like Mallex going from 40 to 60 or whatever, and without the single point of failure effect where your rank in that category is highly dependent on one guy staying healthy and producing all year.

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11 hours ago, B&F said:

People are saying teams might try to skirt the pitchers needing to face a minimum of 3 batters rule by faking injures.  

So sick of the cheating b.s.  Hey managers.  How about playing by the [...] rules?

 

Good I hope that they do this...  It is a really stupid rule to begin with...

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On 12/13/2019 at 2:15 PM, Sidearmer said:

If there are some elite LOOGY's out there then they may be effected, but I can't think of any off the top of my head.

 

"elite LOOGY" is a bit of an oxymoron, which is why you can't think of any. If a pitcher really has "elite" stuff, he can be trusted to face 3 batters, especially with the option of walking at least one of them in most situations.

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Three batter minimum could be a good thing for some closers. 
 

 

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Posted (edited)

Thought I would start this to discuss players who get a big boost if [the universal DH] happens. Some names like Braun, Aquino, Cespedes to name a few. Who else you like?

Edited by tonycpsu

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, wahoos1 said:

Thought I would start this to discuss players who get a big boost if this happens. Some names like Braun, Aquino, Cespedes to name a few. Who else you like?

I assume by "this" you mean the universal DH?  Not exactly hot ticket names anymore, but I would add potentially Howie Kendrick, Hunter Pence, Buster Posey.  Since most of what I listen to is Bay Area radio, they did also mention it could benefit Alex Dickerson as he tends to have trouble staying healthy.  

Edited by ToO_BaD
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4 hours ago, ToO_BaD said:

I assume by "this" you mean the universal DH?  Not exactly hot ticket names anymore, but I would add potentially Howie Kendrick, Hunter Pence, Buster Posey.  Since most of what I listen to is Bay Area radio, they did also mention it could benefit Alex Dickerson as he tends to have trouble staying healthy.  

Yes, I started a topic for universal DH and the modes stuck it into rules change.

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