The Cincinnati Reds, and the rest of Major League Baseball, will be getting a pitch clock this spring. Rob Manfred, the Commissioner of Major League Baseball, noted that today. Jeff Passan was the first to report this.

Baseball has been trying to find a way to increase the action, or downtime in games for a few years. Instituting a pitch clock is one effort to try and make that happen. While this will be new to some players, anyone who has been in the Minor Leagues in the last few years has already experienced this. The pitch clock has shaved somewhere between 5-6 minutes off of games versus the few years before it was instituted at the Minor League level.

The clock will be a 20-second pitch clock. In the Minor Leagues, the clock stops once the pitcher makes their first move. That means if a runner is on, they can stay “set” for long periods of time if they so choose. The clock will also reset/restart if the pitcher chooses to step off of the mound. It’s very difficult to trigger a “penalty” of failing to meet the clock. You can simply step off of the pitching rubber and it starts over. That is, of course, assuming they implement the same rules.

With how things have been going in relations between baseball and the players, it will be interesting how this plays out. Rob Manfred has the power to make this happen without player approval. But the players would certainly like to have a say in this, and get something in return for allowing it to happen in the regular season. Going around them would probably just put more strain on the relationship between the two sides.

9 Responses

  1. CI3J

    I think a pitch clock is a good idea, but I think if they really want to speed up the game, they need to get serious about mound visits/substitutions late in the game, since that’s when things tend to really bog down. Maybe they can institute something like the Premiere League, but where the manager is only allowed 3 pitching substitutions and 2 position player subtitutions for the whole game. If nothing else, that might make people really rethink the closer role since that’s one substitution already burned, and might make managing a bit more strategic when you have to think do you want to put in a pinch hitter or a defensive replacement. This way, they wouldn’t need the 3 batters face minimum rule, but a manager would have to think long and hard on if he wants to burn a substitution just to get one out. Sometimes it may be worth it, others times probably not. Either way, it would add a whole new level of strategic planning.

    Also, I think limiting mound visits is a good idea, but still think 6 is too many. Maybe 4 would be a better number.

    • Doug Gray

      Give the pitcher and catcher ear pieces like the QB/LB get in football. I’m half-kidding about this.

  2. Jreis

    This article is going to give me nightmares Doug. 10 minute delays for instant replays to see if the pitcher did indeed” get the pitch off in time”. No thanks lol

  3. Colorado Red

    Make the batters stay in the box.
    They have said they would do this, but never do.
    No need to see a batter re-adjust everything after every pitch.

    • Mike Adams

      Yes! Yes! Yes!
      And IF a batter is allowed to leave the box he should be hustled back quickly.

  4. Sliotar

    Way, way overdue.

    I heard on MLB Radio sometime in the last week that approximately 67% of 2018 MLBers were exposed to a pitch clock at some point. Tough to argue that players can’t adjust.

    Being of Gen X age, baseball had my attention at an early age. Still does.

    But, also as a Columbus Crew soccer season-ticket holder, when I attend Reds games each year, it feels slower and slower. Like everyone on both teams keeps finding their own reasons not to put the ball in play. HR/K/BB focus doesn’t help, either.

    Not good for capturing the attention of the hyper-stimulated, watch-action-anytime-on-a-phone generations behind me.

  5. BK

    I like the Dietrech signing…good LH hitter. He’s a defensive liability, but passable versatility for the bench. Reds don’t really have a LH on their bench unless Senzel earns the everyday role in CF.

    • Matt WI

      Yes, I found it surprising that Dietrech was just hanging out there. Very passable bench opportunity.

  6. WVRedlegs

    How does this signing of Derek Deitrich make sense? Well, it signals that Blandino isn’t going to be ready opening day and that Nick Senzel will begin the season at Louisville for the first 2 or 3 weeks.