MLB wants pitch clocks for 2018
According to MLB Legal Officer Dan Halem, the league would like to strike an agreement with the Players Association by the start of the new year for new pace of play measures. There are apparently a few different things included on MLB’s wish list, but the highlight is the pitch clock that they’ve been pushing for for years. There are many different opinions about the pitch clock, and I can’t say for sure that it would work in the majors. However, I have been to many minor-league games that have the pitch clock in the stadium and it really does improve the flow of the game. As many have noted over the last year or two, the actual game time isn’t really the main issue with baseball. Four hours games are really only a problem if it’s a four hour game with little to no action involved. Baseball simply needs a brisker pace and less dead time, and this clock should help. Maybe the implementation wouldn’t be as smooth in the majors since minor-league ball was always faster to begin with, but it seems to be worth a shot in my eyes.
Shohei Otani may not be U.S.-bound as quickly as we think
MLB and Japan’s NPB agreed on a new posting system not too long ago, and that seemed to open the door for superstar Shohei Otani’s arrival in the States. Instead, it may not happen so soon. According to Fanrag Sports’ Jon Heyman, the MLBPA is blocking this agreement for the time being. It seems as if their biggest issue is that teams are set to get $20 million for posting Otani, but the player is only going to get $3 million at most and could get as little as $300,000. That is an absurd imbalance and highlights how dumb the new changes to the international signing rules are. I’m pleasantly surprised the Players Union is actually taking up this fight, though it’s obviously partially their own fault that we got here in the first place. As for the Red Sox, if something does happen where Otani won’t be subject to the international signing rules, that should work in Boston’s favor. They still likely wouldn’t be the favorites, but any time they can flex their financial muscle is a good thing.
- The A’s and the Mariners made the first trade of the offseason on Wednesday night, with Oakland sending corner infielder Ryon Healy to Seattle for reliever Emilio Pagan and infield prospect Alexander Campos. Healy is going to play first base for Seattle, meaning he could have theoretically been a target for the Red Sox, though he’s likely better off in a platoon rather than an everyday role.
- Derek Jeter spoke with the media on Wednesday, and he revealed that he hasn’t spoken with Giancarlo Stanton to this point in the offseason. Jeter obviously is just an owner, but he’s presenting himself as the face of the baseball side of ownership. It seems a little odd that he wouldn’t have spoken to the slugger yet, and it suggests trade talks haven’t advanced very far to this point.
- We’ve been waiting for over a month to find out what the penalties will be for the Braves after their “unprecedented” violations in Latin America and the draft. According to Ken Rosenthal, while we aren’t sure of the specifics they will “definitely” lose some prospects. This is good news for a Red Sox team that could use a boost in their farm system and have the money to spend on signing bonuses.