Rather than intervene now, commisioner Bud Selig has opted to give the Red Sox and Cubs another week to come to an agreement on the compensation for Theo Epstein, who left Boston to become the Cubs’ president of baseball operation.
The commisioner’s office cited the preoccupation both teams have had with other matters in recent days. The Cubs fired Mike Quade on Wednesday and are now in the same boat with the Red Sox in looking for a new manager. Also, both teams had decisions to make on contract options prior to midnight Monday.
If another week goes by without an agreement, Selig will likely settle matters then.
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.