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From The Press Box

Amaury Pi-González

After a short Spring Training because of the 99-day lockout by owners, each team will embark on their regular 162-game journey for the 2022 season, beginning on April 7.

 New this 2022 Season

– DH (designated hitter) now will be Universal. Sorry “old school” National League fans.

– Pitchers will no longer have a spot in the batting order. Sorry for Madison Bumgarner.

Madison Bumgarner pinch hits for D-backs in 9th inning of tie game
Madison Bumgarner hitting.

– Playoffs will expand from 10 teams (five each league) to 12 teams (six each league)  Owners happy more money.

– Three Divisional winners and 3 Wild Card teams in each league.
The top two division winners in each league will receive byes to the Division Series. The other four teams in each league will play best-of-three series in what will be called the Wild Card round, with the higher seed hosting all three games.
– No re-seeding for Division Series. The No. 1 seed plays the winner of the 4-5 series, and the No. 2 seed plays the winner of 3-6.
– No more games known as (Game 163) to decide playoff spots. Playoff spots will be determined through tiebreaker formulas.
– The Rule 5 Draft has been canceled for this season. Usually held each December, the Rule 5 Draft allows clubs without a 40-man roster to selected certain non-40 man roster players from other clubs. Clubs draft in reverse order of the standing from the previous season. No more.

– There will be complete 9 inning games for Double Headers. (Double-Headers made-up from games lost because of lockout or rainouts this year.)

– No “automatic runner” at second base at the start of extra-innings. It didn’t look like baseball.

– Players’ uniforms will feature advertising, including patches on jerseys and decals on batting helmets. More revenue.

-The number of times a player can be optioned to the minor leagues in one season will be limited.
————————————————————————————————————————Back to the Future: Beginning in 2023 – A Joint Competition Committee comprise of four active players and six members appointed by MLB plus one umpire will be tasked with making decisions on other changes, such as pitch clock, limits on defensive shifts, larger bases, and the automatic ball/strike system. Any rule changes that committee adopts can be implemented with 45 days’ notice to the players.

Pitch clocks will be used. There will be a ban on defensive shifts, an automatic ball/strike zone will exist and there will be larger bases. In 2023, teams will play five fewer games against division opponents, instead of playing one series against every team in the other league. Teams will continue to play their “rival” Inter-league team four times, twice at each ballpark.
(More on Pitch Clocks) In 2021, MLB implemented a pitch clock in the Low-A West five weeks into the season, giving pitchers 15 SECONDS WITH NO ONE ON BASE and 17 SECONDS WITH RUNNERS ON. The average time of a nine-inning game dropped from 3 hours and 2 minutes to 2 hours and 41 minutes after the pitch clock was introduced, with offense jumping across the board.

MLB & MLPA agreed to host games or tours in the following locations over the next 5 years:
México, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic, Asia, London and Paris.

Social Media News: Apple takes a Bite at Baseball. Apple now owns rights to the Friday-night package of MLB games. They will have exclusive rights to telecast two “Friday Night Baseball” games each week, a total of about 50 games per year, in the U.S and eight countries overseas, via Apple TV Plus.

So let’s make if fun again, because in the end, it is a kid’s game.

Hasta la vista.

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