Baseball is a wonderful sport where opposing teams club small white orbs to death and run around in their pajamas, and the only problem with it is that games are interminable. As you may recall, the seventh inning of Game 5 of the 2016 NLDS took approximately an hour and the entire game lasted close to five. Too long! Too much baseball!
As it turns out, Major League Baseball is considering a patch. According to a report from Yahoo Sports’ Jeff Passan, they’re planning on starting extra-innings games in the Arizona Fall League and the Gulf Coast League with a runner on second base. The upcoming World Baseball Classic will have this regulation in place, and it’s been a part of international baseball for over ten years. Joe Torre’s even a fan!
“Let’s see what it looks like,” said Joe Torre, the longtime major league manager who’s now MLB’s Chief Baseball Officer and a strong proponent of the testing. “It’s not fun to watch when you go through your whole pitching staff and wind up bringing a utility infielder in to pitch. As much as it’s nice to talk about being at an 18-inning game, it takes time.
“It’s baseball. I’m just trying to get back to that, where this is the game that people come to watch. It doesn’t mean you’re going to score. You’re just trying to play baseball.”
Of course, even if this is wildly successful in the minors and increases the speed and quality of games, it’ll take a while for it to trickle up to the majors. Whether that hypothetical change will unseat baseball from atop Deadspin’s ranked list of overtime rules remains a question for another day.