Rob Manfred said he’d consider limiting the number of pitching changes in a game

Getty Images
22 Comments

Let’s preface this with the acknowledgment that (a) Rob Manfred was likely asked this in response to that dumb “improve baseball” column Buster Olney wrote, not because anyone in power is suggesting it; and (b) that Manfred, ever the politician and consensus-builder, would say he’d consider almost anything if presented to him up to and including Jus Primae Noctis privileges for the reigning MVP.

This is mostly because the m.o. of MLB for the past decade or two has been to (a) never say yes or no to anything, no matter how dumb, until people like us have argued it to death; (b) to take the side of the victor; and (c) then claim that everyone has always agreed that its course of action was a great idea and no one ever thought differently. That’s annoying, of course, but super duper effective.

Anyway, here’s the latest of these:

I seriously doubt anyone in baseball is actually considering this. Like I said, it came up in Olney’s thing and I’m sure someone got a hold of Manfred so they could keep the content rolling. No harm, no foul.

But it’s a dumb idea, right? I hope we can all agree on that. That it’s dumb to constrict the manner in which baseball players and managers do their jobs solely because some people who are too impatient to sit through a baseball game had an idea how to make the time go by faster. It’s one thing to put a clock on guys and make them do what they were already doing a bit more quickly, but to actually take away tools players and managers use to save some time is a different proposition in my mind.

Oh well. I wish Manfred, when this stuff comes up, would say “hahaha, no one is thinking about that except some baseball columnist looking for some cross-audience synergy with his employer’s radio operation.” But I guess you don’t become the Commissioner of Baseball by speaking plain and direct sense like that.