Major League Baseball to implement multiple rule changes in 2023
With just under a month left in the 2022 Major League Baseball regular season, new rules are set to hit the league at the start of the 2023 season.
New Major League Baseball Rules
- Pitch Timer
- Bigger Bases
- Shift Restrictions
The biggest complaint of casual baseball fans is the “pace of play” and length of games, which will now be cut down with a pitch timer being added.
When the bases are empty, there will be a 15-second timer for the pitcher, catcher, and batter at the plate. If a runner is on base, the timer will be 20 seconds. Every hitter will only receive one “timeout” while they’re at the plate, which will speed up at-bats as well.
Major League Baseball says that MiLB games have been reduced by 26 minutes with the pitch timer added to their games in the 2021-2022 season.
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Increase in Base Size
1st Base, 2nd Base, and 3rd Base will all be increased by 3 square inches, going from 15″ to 18″. This rule has been implemented to benefit player safety, as we’ve seen many rolled ankles, along with players stepping on other players’ ankles while running through the base.
Players tend to over-slide the base in today’s game. Major League Baseball believes that bigger bases will solve that issue as well. With the current bases, a player diving in and skimming the corner is bound to slide right past the base with the momentum they gain on the bases.
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The biggest rule change that Major League Baseball has added is the banning of the shift. Players have always been able to shift around the infield, depending on the batter and his hitting tendencies at the plate.
Now, two infielders must be positioned on either side of second bases when the pitch is released. All four infielders must have both feet in the dirt instead of playing deep in the hole in the grass, something you see commonly at shortstop and even third base.
All three of these rules will be set in stone at the beginning of the 2023 regular season, after successful test runs in all levels of Minor League Baseball in 2022.
Up Next for the Phillies
The Fightins take the field tonight as they kick off a 3-game set with the Washington Nationals. Noah Syndergaard takes the hill, going up against Patrick Corbin.