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  1. #1
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    MLB Strike Zone Change / No More 4-Pitch IBB

    NOTE: I tried clarifying the title to indicate eliminating the need for 4 pitches on the IBB, but it's not working.

    https://www.yahoo.com/sports/blogs/mlb-big-league-stew/report--mlb-nearing-changes-to-strike-zone-and-intentional-walks-003454802.html

    ...In a report filed on Friday, Stark says that the league's competition committee reportedly agreed to alter the strike zone and eliminate the four-pitch intentional walk during their meetings with owners this week. Those two changes could be implemented as early as the 2017 season.

    The strike zone is currently defined as the volume of space above home plate and between the batter's knees and the midpoint of their torso

    ...the strike zone will be raised to the top of the knee, because umpires have taken a liking to calling pitches that were below the knees entirely.

    The intentional-walk rule would end the traditional practice of requiring the pitcher to lob four balls outside the strike zone. Instead, a team could signify it wants to issue an intentional walk, and the hitter would be immediately sent to first base, sources said.
    .
    I don't like either change. The umpires should call it as the rule is written now.

    I don't like the free pass either. Crazy things happen and its being eliminated to save what? 2-3 minutes a game?

  2. #2

    Re: MLB Strike Zone Changing / No More IBB

    He says the strike zone will be raised to the top of the knee, because umpires have taken a liking to calling pitches that were below the knees entirely. That means pitchers will have to bring the baseball up, which means hitters should have a better chance to elevate the baseball.
    this is terrible for the sinkerballers and slider-throwers

  3. #3
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    Re: MLB Strike Zone Changing / No More IBB

    They've tinkered with the strike zone before. Whatever.

    Eliminating the four pitch intentional walk? Stupid. There's an opportunity cost to skipping the opponent's best hitter when he comes up with a base open beyond awarding the free base, which is the pitcher must throw four successful pitches to the catcher, or the plan likely blows up and you may very well have to actually pitch to the batter they tried to walk.

    Let's have a second super DH too! He'll hit for the weakest defensive guy!1 Score!

  4. #4
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    Re: MLB Strike Zone Changing / No More IBB

    I like both changes but what they really need is an electronic strike zone. Otherwise umpires are still going to call whatever strike zone they want.
    David Ortiz tested positive for performance enhancing drugs in 2003.

  5. #5

    Re: MLB Strike Zone Changing / No More IBB

    I don't like the elimination of the IBB. It doesn't happen very often but now and then something *does* happen when the pitcher has to throw those four lob pitches. Plus the elimination of those pitches wouldn't save more than 30 seconds.

    As far as the strike zone is concerned, I do agree that it has gotten too low but the unintended consequence may very well be more walks instead of more hits as hitters lay off the low pitches. I could very easily live with an electronic strike zone. Ball and strike calls are the most inconsistent aspect of baseball.
    I can't complain but sometimes I still do. - Joe Walsh

  6. #6
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    Re: MLB Strike Zone Changing / No More IBB

    Quote Originally Posted by Ram Man View Post
    I don't like the elimination of the IBB. It doesn't happen very often but now and then something *does* happen when the pitcher has to throw those four lob pitches. Plus the elimination of those pitches wouldn't save more than 30 seconds.

    As far as the strike zone is concerned, I do agree that it has gotten too low but the unintended consequence may very well be more walks instead of more hits as hitters lay off the low pitches. I could very easily live with an electronic strike zone. Ball and strike calls are the most inconsistent aspect of baseball.
    Eliminating those pitches makes zero sense.

  7. #7

    Re: MLB Strike Zone Changing / No More IBB

    Quote Originally Posted by NelsonMuntz View Post
    I like both changes but what they really need is an electronic strike zone. Otherwise umpires are still going to call whatever strike zone they want.
    I'd love to see an electronic zone. Tennis did it years ago with serves- I know it's a different sport, but baseball seems to lag in utilizing technology.

    I also love the lower zone raised to the top of the knee. The bottom of the knee caused pitches to be called too low, imo. I would also like to see the top of the strike zone enforced- too many umps don't call it.

    The automatic IBB vs throwing 4 pitches doesn't matter to me either way. Since it's quicker to eliminate those pitches, I don't have a problem as I'm in favor of almost everything that will quicken the pace of the game.
    It won't be long before we can all forget Cano and realize that Castro can be everything Robinson was for us. - Retired_Doc

  8. #8

    Re: MLB Strike Zone Changing / No More IBB

    it's hilarious watching MLB try to reduce game times with all these various but tiny modifications that have miniscule effects when the biggest reason, by far, that games take so long these days is because of the commercials. nothing else even comes close. but there's no way that those will be cut, because, at the end of the day, MLB is a money-making institution above all else.

  9. #9
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    Re: MLB Strike Zone Changing / No More IBB

    I guess what bothers me most about the strike zone is the reason it's being changed. Its not to benefit the pitchers or batters, generate offense, reduce gametime or anything about the game itself. It is because the umpires can't get it right, or be consistent.


    "At the knee" is pretty clear, and I don't believe raising the zone because the umpires have taken to calling strikes below the knee fixes the real problem.

  10. #10
    Do not vex me mortal Hitman23's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SatchelPaigeYankee View Post
    it's hilarious watching MLB try to reduce game times with all these various but tiny modifications that have miniscule effects when the biggest reason, by far, that games take so long these days is because of the commercials. nothing else even comes close. but there's no way that those will be cut, because, at the end of the day, MLB is a money-making institution above all else.
    I endorse this post. Except the bolded part. That phrase needs to go away. Immediately.

  11. #11

    Re: MLB Strike Zone Changing / No More IBB

    Quote Originally Posted by SatchelPaigeYankee View Post
    it's hilarious watching MLB try to reduce game times with all these various but tiny modifications that have miniscule effects when the biggest reason, by far, that games take so long these days is because of the commercials. nothing else even comes close. but there's no way that those will be cut, because, at the end of the day, MLB is a money-making institution above all else.
    I don't see the commercials having a big effect.

    In between innings, there's going to be down time and that's a natural time to have commercials. In fact, Manfred is experimenting with ideas that indirectly will cut down on commercial time- specifically limiting the number of pitchers in the late innings.

    Other sports actually have TV timeouts. When you go to an NFL game, you'll see action halted and players standing around sometimes, as the television watching public have to sit through added commercials. MLB doesn't do that.
    It won't be long before we can all forget Cano and realize that Castro can be everything Robinson was for us. - Retired_Doc

  12. #12
    Do not vex me mortal Hitman23's Avatar
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    Re: MLB Strike Zone Changing / No More IBB

    In the past I've always favored any improvements to the game where something was obviously broken. Or just could be made better because of technology or whatever. But this tinkering here and there, it's getting frustrating. I don't like the IBB idea. It didn't need fixing. I am absolutely fine with enforcing a strike zone and have it enforced consistently. But the elimination of the IBB is just change for the sake of change.

  13. #13
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    Re: MLB Strike Zone Changing / No More IBB

    Regarding commercials, I am really annoyed by the Firestone ad that popped up on the bottom of the screen last night. I don't get to see every inning of every game - last night was the first time I saw it. Its disruptive like Suzyn and John branding the first of everything.

  14. #14
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    Re: MLB Strike Zone Changing / No More IBB

    Quote Originally Posted by melon View Post
    I don't see the commercials having a big effect.

    In between innings, there's going to be down time and that's a natural time to have commercials. In fact, Manfred is experimenting with ideas that indirectly will cut down on commercial time- specifically limiting the number of pitchers in the late innings.

    Other sports actually have TV timeouts. When you go to an NFL game, you'll see action halted and players standing around sometimes, as the television watching public have to sit through added commercials. MLB doesn't do that.
    I believe they DO do this, but only for the nationally televised Fox and ESPN games. Those have longer commercial intervals between innings and players have to wait for the TV to clear and the ump gives the "Play Ball" signal.

    Regular games are limited to 2 minutes, 25 seconds between half innings, which is about right. Nationally televised games are longer--2 minutes 45 seconds. That's about six minutes extra commercials per game.
    "Deep to left! Yastrzemski will not get it! It's a home run! A three-run homer by Bucky Dent! And the Yankees now lead by a score of 3-2!" - New York Yankees announcer Bill White (October 2, 1978)

  15. #15

    Re: MLB Strike Zone Changing / No More IBB

    Quote Originally Posted by Hitman23 View Post
    In the past I've always favored any improvements to the game where something was obviously broken. Or just could be made better because of technology or whatever. But this tinkering here and there, it's getting frustrating. I don't like the IBB idea. It didn't need fixing. I am absolutely fine with enforcing a strike zone and have it enforced consistently. But the elimination of the IBB is just change for the sake of change.
    I'm not going to lose sleep over missing out on the opportunity to watch a pitcher lob 4 pitches outside the strike zone. I'm certain that I'm not going to feel deprived.
    Success is getting what you want. Happiness is wanting what you get. ~ Dale Carnegie

  16. #16
    Do not vex me mortal Hitman23's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fredgmuggs View Post
    I'm not going to lose sleep over missing out on the opportunity to watch a pitcher lob 4 pitches outside the strike zone. I'm certain that I'm not going to feel deprived.
    Me either. It's more of a big picture thing. Tinkering with stuff that doesn't need tinkering can get out of hand.

  17. #17

    Re: MLB Strike Zone Changing / No More IBB

    I think in the big picture, it has to do with attracting millennials to the sport. They need something with more pace and every little bit counts.
    It won't be long before we can all forget Cano and realize that Castro can be everything Robinson was for us. - Retired_Doc

  18. #18

    Re: MLB Strike Zone Changing / No More IBB

    Quote Originally Posted by melon View Post
    I don't see the commercials having a big effect.

    In between innings, there's going to be down time and that's a natural time to have commercials. In fact, Manfred is experimenting with ideas that indirectly will cut down on commercial time- specifically limiting the number of pitchers in the late innings.

    Other sports actually have TV timeouts. When you go to an NFL game, you'll see action halted and players standing around sometimes, as the television watching public have to sit through added commercials. MLB doesn't do that.
    Anyone who has gone to an untelevised minor league game notices the difference immediately. and that's even with the in-stadium between-innings promotions.

  19. #19
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    Re: MLB Strike Zone Changing / No More IBB

    Quote Originally Posted by SatchelPaigeYankee View Post
    Anyone who has gone to an untelevised minor league game notices the difference immediately. and that's even with the in-stadium between-innings promotions.
    So I guess a good test might be to gather the average time of games for televised mL games vs the avg time for those televised?
    Equally as calm as ClownPickle ~(+/- 1)

  20. #20
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    Re: MLB Strike Zone Changing / No More IBB

    Quote Originally Posted by theDurk View Post
    I believe they DO do this, but only for the nationally televised Fox and ESPN games. Those have longer commercial intervals between innings and players have to wait for the TV to clear and the ump gives the "Play Ball" signal.

    Regular games are limited to 2 minutes, 25 seconds between half innings, which is about right. Nationally televised games are longer--2 minutes 45 seconds. That's about six minutes extra commercials per game.

    I can always tell when I'm at a Fox or ESPN game, if I didn't know before. The national anthem is played with the players still in the dugout; then, several wasted minutes later, the team finally takes the field.
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  21. #21
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    Re: MLB Strike Zone Changing / No More IBB

    I hate the idea of letting a hitter take an intentional pass without any pitches being thrown. For what, to cut down on game times? For that matter, what's the need for a hitter circling the bases after hitting a home run? Heck, the ball is out of the park, the run counts, why waste time running the bases? Some things just ought not to be messed with.
    Yankee fan living in Maine.

  22. #22
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    Re: MLB Strike Zone Changing / No More IBB

    Quote Originally Posted by apalradio View Post
    I hate the idea of letting a hitter take an intentional pass without any pitches being thrown. For what, to cut down on game times? For that matter, what's the need for a hitter circling the bases after hitting a home run? Heck, the ball is out of the park, the run counts, why waste time running the bases? Some things just ought not to be messed with.
    Thank you.

  23. #23
    Do not vex me mortal Hitman23's Avatar
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    Re: MLB Strike Zone Changing / No More IBB

    Quote Originally Posted by apalradio View Post
    I hate the idea of letting a hitter take an intentional pass without any pitches being thrown. For what, to cut down on game times? For that matter, what's the need for a hitter circling the bases after hitting a home run? Heck, the ball is out of the park, the run counts, why waste time running the bases? Some things just ought not to be messed with.
    That's what I'm talking about when I say the tinkering. This is a prime example of where it could go. I understand the idea of trying to pick up the pace of the game but don't start taking away the essence of the game in order to do it. I'm not suggesting that this particular example would happen, I'd be shocked. It's just an example of how far things could go.

  24. #24
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    Re: MLB Strike Zone Changing / No More IBB


  25. #25

    Re: MLB Strike Zone Changing / No More IBB

    Quote Originally Posted by SatchelPaigeYankee View Post
    Anyone who has gone to an untelevised minor league game notices the difference immediately. and that's even with the in-stadium between-innings promotions.
    I cannot disagree with you.

    I'm trying to say that when Manfred is focusing on pace of play, he won't want to tinker with his money making time in between innings.
    It won't be long before we can all forget Cano and realize that Castro can be everything Robinson was for us. - Retired_Doc

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