Everything about the 2020 MLB season is shortened. In addition to a 60-game season, the league launched new rules to try and get games completed in even less time.
This year, every inning beyond the ninth starts with a runner on second base, an attempt to increase extra inning scoring and prevent games from going into the 10th, 11th or 12th inning. Additionally, after the start of the season, MLB and players came to an agreement to allow doubleheaders featuring two seven-inning games.
According to the most recent SB Nation Reacts survey, baseball fans aren’t enjoying the rule changes. Fewer than 50 percent of fans said they like the extra-inning rule and only about one-quarter of fans hope the rule stays beyond this season.
I personally really hate this rule, but then I like 17 inning games. Once it gets to 11 innings I start cheering for a record. I loved that managers had to come right out of their comfort zone and had to deal with just craziness. I’ll admit, recaps are tougher to write. For recaps, I like games that are decided by the 7th inning.
That said, those games can’t happen this season. There has been too many injuries already. It will piss me off if this rule change continues after this year. Though I do think it might buy Anthony Alford a roster spot.
Results were similar when fans were asked about the doubleheader change. Only 42 percent of fans are in favor of two seven-inning games.
Yes, again, I’m too old school, I hate this. Much like above, I like that it makes the manager’s life more difficult. Honestly, I don’t think managers affect win/loss records all that much. I think players win and lose games. But, long extra inning games, double-headers, these things will test a manager.
My feeling is that managers, back in the old days, had more of a say in wins and losses. There was more difference between managers. Some bunted more. Some used the hit and run more. Some were very quick hooks, some were slow hooks. Now, no one bunts much and when they do we hate it.
Now all managers know all the same stuff, they don’t want to do anything that will set them apart. I liked the old days when managers all had personalities. Earl Weaver and Billy Martin both yelled a lot, but beyond that they were totally different managers. Now the difference between managers seems to be all shades of gray.
The main reason for baseball’s doubleheader push is an attempt to complete as many of each team’s 60 game schedule as possible. With multiple teams already dealing with an extended layoff between games due to positive COVID-19 tests, it’s becoming more likely that even with doubleheaders teams will fall short of the 60-game mark. Another issue fans have with the season.
When asked how many games are needed from a team to enter the playoffs, a plurality of fans said each team needs to complete all 60 games.
Right now, I feel number of games is irreverent. I’m taking the season a game at a time.
To vote in the Reacts surveys and have your voice heard each week, sign up here.