There are going to a lot of different things we see in the upcoming 2020 baseball season, but nothing crazier than the modified extra innings. With baseball needing to get in 60 games in 66 days, there's an emphasis being placed on preventing long games. In an effort to eliminate lengthy extra inning affairs MLB has instituted a rule where starting in the 10th each team gets a runner on 2nd base to start the inning. Baseball purists are going to shit themselves when they see this in action. And oh yes it'll happen a lot. About 10% of baseball games need more than 9 innings to decide a winner.
Do I like the rule? No, of course not it's outrageous. I'm a guy who LOVES when a game gets to the 15th + inning and goes all night. I root for shit to get to the 18th. I'm also a fan and not a player who has to play 60 games in 66 days. We just can't be having games run into the 15th at 2am given the circumstances. I do wish the rule started in like the 11th or 12th inning, but that being said I understand what they're doing. This will 100% shorten games and be effective, it's just going to be fucked for everyone watching at home for the first time. Some people were asking for games to just end in a tie rather than this. Tying in sports in un-American. That's some soccer EPL bullshit where everyone is content going home with a 0-0 result. Nope, not a fucking chance. I need a winner every single game. Even if they decided on a home run derby after 9 innings I'd take that over a goddamn tie.
So with this rule's addition is going to come some interesting strategy. By that I mean bunting. You will see a lot of bunting. I imagine more often than not we are just going to end up in a 1st and 3rd 1 out situation. Bunt the guy over from 2nd. Intentionally walk next batter to set up the double play. I could also see managers intentionally walking the lead off guy right away to set up the wheel play and get the lead runner at 3rd. I can almost guarantee we will have a walk off suicide squeeze in the next few months. My money is on the Angels doing it because Joe Maddon is out of his mind and doesn't give a fuck.
Also, who starts the inning on 2nd base? It looks like that's going to be the batter who recorded the last out in the previous inning. I feel like each team is going to keep their fastest guy on the bench the whole game just for this spot. So for the Yankees Tyler Wade will actually never play a second in the field because of this role. That sucks for him, but strategy is strategy.
What about in a tie game, do you not go to your closer in the 9th if he's more of a strikeout guy? Do you save him for the 10th to try and limit contact? Pitchers will get charged with wins and losses if they come in for the extra inning, but the runner on 2nd doesn't go against their ERA. This also opens the door for this fucked up situation.
It's going to be weird. People are going to hate it so much. Old men are going to yell at clouds and talk about back in their day, but you know what? Baseball is back and I don't care about anything else. I'll accept all the changes so I can turn on my television and watch my sport again. Just stay the fuck away corona, you've done enough.
P.S. The Mets are going to lead the league in getting picked off at 2nd to start an inning and I cannot wait. This rule was built for them to fuck up. Actually I'll do them one better. They're going to forget to send a runner out to 2nd and no one is going to tell them. The new way of batting out of order. I love it. Invent new ways to be the Mets.