MLB has eliminated the 4 pitch intentional walk. Instead the coach will signal to the umpire that he is going to let the batter go from the batters box to first base. Therefore, it still is an intentional walk yet no pitches were thrown! Speeds up the game by seconds! Wow!
Intentional walks have actually been declining. There were just 932 games in 2016 with an intentional walk. That’s an average of 1 intentional walk every 2.6 games.
Here are some other rules being considered to speed up the game:
- After a batter hits a home run they do not have to run the bases. They can just go directly back to the dugout and it will still count as a home run. Saves the game about 20 seconds.
- MLB will eliminate the 7th inning stretch. Fans are required to stretch before and after the game. Sorry Mets fans that means no piano man. This saves about a 2 to 3 minutes.
- Relief pitchers must be driven from the bullpen to the pitchers mound on a golf cart. The time it takes to jog from the bullpen takes too long. This saves about 40 seconds.
- Robots and drones will be in place of bat and ball boys. The quickness of retrieving foul balls and bats on deck is an essential part to speeding up the game. This saves about 20 seconds.
If you have any ideas on how to speed up the beautiful game of baseball don’t hesitate to tweet at MLB on twitter. Speeding up the game of baseball is a crucial part in increase viewer ratings and decreasing the “fun of the game.” -Rob Manfred