The Diamondbacks head into San Francisco tonight with a six-game lead and the ability to all but put the defending champs away for good. But, with nine straight wins under their belts, there are even greater things at stake:
Arizona general manager Kevin Towers and club president Derrick Hall offered to sacrifice their hair if the winning streak hits 10 … “Can’t wait to get the 10th win in SF so I can shave some heads!!!!” Arizona infielder Ryan Roberts posted on Twitter.
Kirk Gibson likewise offered to shave his head. Given that he’s been as bald as me since the Reagan Administration, that should take two seconds.
Actually, that’s a lie. Gibson made no such offer. And I imagine that he’d fine anyone who came near him.
ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick reports that talks between Major League Baseball and the MLB Players’ Association concerning pace of play changes have stalled, which makes it more likely that commissioner Rob Manfred unilaterally implements the changes he seeks. Those changes include a pitch clock and a restriction on catcher mound visits.
Manfred said, “My preferred path is a negotiated agreement with the players. But if we can’t get an agreement, we are going to have rule changes in 2018, one way or the other.”
The players have made several suggestions aimed at reducing the length of games, such as amending replay review rules, strictly monitoring down time between innings, and bringing back bullpen carts.
It is believed that MLB is proposing a pitch clock of 20 seconds. If a pitcher takes too long between pitches, he will have a ball added to the count. If the hitter takes too long, then he will have a strike added to the count.