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Article: Players’ Union Rejects Pace Of Play Proposals

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#41 Dman

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Posted 19 January 2018 - 01:08 PM

 

I'm not sure what the league average is, but here are some more numbers:

 

Twins

Avg. pace: 24.8 seconds (eight slowest in baseball)

Avg. pitches/game: 145

 

Cleveland

Avg. pace: 24.0

Avg. pitches/game: 142

 

So a 20-second pitch clock in theory would've saved about 21 minutes from the average Twins-Cleveland game last season. I suspect players will find other ways to slow things down, but a pitch clock could make a huge difference. 

 

To find the pitcher pace numbers at Fangraphs, go to the Pitch Info tab and click Plate Discipline. Pace should be listed at the far right.

Hmmm I am surprised by those numbers.I thought most teams\pitchers would be closer to 20 seconds than that.I assume 20 must be a reasonable amount time as that is the number they tested with.I just thought there were already a majority of pitchers that were at or around 20 seconds I guess that assumption was way off then.


#42 Craig Arko

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Posted 19 January 2018 - 01:13 PM

 

Unofficial poll: how many of you watch the games on DVR? I agree that 3 to 4 hours in a ball park is as close to heaven on earth as we might experience. But, 4 hours on TV is a bit long.

I "tape" the game (And by using the word "tape" I admit my age) and start watching around an hour of hour and a half later.

Just curious.

Never. I either watch in real time or not at all.

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#43 SD Buhr

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Posted 19 January 2018 - 01:25 PM

 

I would love if it were 6 or 6:30, but I don't know that they'd ever change it because a lot of people work until 5. Rush hour traffic etc.

Yeah, you might have later arriving crowds and some complaints about games starting too soon after "normal" end of workday (if that even exists any more), but I suspect the reason for continuing 7:00ish starts has more to do with money than fan convenience.

 

Start times are really all about maximizing eyes on TV broadcasts and thus broadcast rights fees. I guarantee that if FSN had data showing games would draw more viewers by starting at 4 pm, that's what would happen. But prime time generates the most money.

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#44 Dantes929

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Posted 19 January 2018 - 01:37 PM

 

But how many pitchers are truly that slow? I don't think that that is a rampant problem, maybe in just a few instances ... so we make everyone play a certain way because of the small handful out there?  

Um.... Yeah.Make everyone play a certain way and it will make the really slow handful quicker and those that already are on a good pace are not affected.There are probably only a few golfers that are really slow but everyone is on the same clock.Why should the slow ones take up everyone's time?Yes, make everyone play a certain way. There is still room for a Buehrle to pitch at a faster pace. This just keeps players from pitching at a really slow pace.I don't know why anyone would have a problem with this.Maybe throw it out or add 5 seconds for the playoffs.

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#45 SD Buhr

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Posted 19 January 2018 - 01:43 PM

I think it's pretty obvious that the players didn't tell their union to reject all of the pace of play changes because they object to picking up the pace.

 

They did it because they're pissed off about the free agent situation this offseason.

 

They're pissed at their union for screwing up the latest CBA. (Yes, they should be pissed at themselves, but have you ever seen a group admit their own complicity in a failure?)

 

They're pissed at the owners for not continuing to pay huge long-term money to aging players that aren't really much better at their jobs than the cost-controlled younger players.

 

They're just really pissed and you won't see them, as a group, agree to ANY kind of ownership proposal until we see how the free agency situation plays itself out.

 

Yes, they want any fan backlash to pace-of-play changes to be focused solely on the owners. But they're not considering the possibility that the changes might turn out to be popular with a lot of fans, who would then see the players as unreasonable.

 

Still, I think it's all about timing. They won't agree to anything the owners want to do and they aren't feeling too anxious to even empower their union leadership to negotiate anything for them.

 

It's ugly and if we don't start seeing some big contracts signed soon, it could get uglier.

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#46 Tom Froemming

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Posted 19 January 2018 - 01:45 PM

 

Hmmm I am surprised by those numbers.I thought most teams\pitchers would be closer to 20 seconds than that.I assume 20 must be a reasonable amount time as that is the number they tested with.I just thought there were already a majority of pitchers that were at or around 20 seconds I guess that assumption was way off then.

I was too. I didn't realize how bad things have gotten the past five or so years. Last year's quickest team (St. Louis at 22.7) would've ranked 20th back in 2011. Last season 11 teams exceeded 24 seconds on average compared to just one team in 2011.


#47 Sconnie

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Posted 19 January 2018 - 02:28 PM

Can't say I really have a "problem" with most of those proposed additions with the one exception being players talking to the pitcher or "visiting" the mound. That has been a part of the game since it's inception and IMHO should be left alone.

I would agree that the hitter constantly stepping out of the batters box to adjust every part of his uniform imaginable is mind numbingly irritating, but to me a huge part of that starts with the umpire. Don't give the player Carte Blanc to step out all willy nilly. Actually hold his feet to the proverbial fire. If the hitter keeps stepping out, let the pitcher throw a free strike. That would keep them honest.

are umpires not employed by the league? Seems like the easiest way to speed the game up is to direct the umpires to not allow time outs by batters so often.
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#48 mikelink45

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Posted 19 January 2018 - 02:45 PM

 

But how many pitchers are truly that slow? I don't think that that is a rampant problem, maybe in just a few instances ... so we make everyone play a certain way because of the small handful out there? I'm more annoyed with the time between half innings and innings to make way for ads and other folly ... and that is an issue whether I'm at home or in person.

 

Edit: that list you posted wasn't about slow pitchers, specifically ... there were a couple in there noted for their slow delivery, but otherwise it was a list of 'painful to watch' for a host of other reasons.

Thanks for the note, I put a better reference into my posting.I agree with the between innings, ad time, etc, but it really is the whole package that has to be examined.  

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#49 mikelink45

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Posted 19 January 2018 - 02:47 PM

 

Everything contributes to this.Slow pitchers are boring, they detract from the viewers pleasure and contribute to the negative reactions of general fans - check out this list of painful to watch pitchers. http://www.bleacherr...tch-in-baseballAs a fan would you object to speeding them up?I wouldn't.

Here is a better reference for slow working pitchers - https://www.fangraph...pitchers-took/

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#50 Carole Keller

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Posted 19 January 2018 - 02:48 PM

 

Thanks for the note, I put a better reference into my posting.I agree with the between innings, ad time, etc, but it really is the whole package that has to be examined.  

That's what I have basically said from the beginning ... look at EVERYTHING and adjust accordingly. The proposal are just so ... well, seem so one-sided to me.

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#51 mikelink45

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Posted 19 January 2018 - 02:49 PM

 

Thanks for the note, I put a better reference into my posting.I agree with the between innings, ad time, etc, but it really is the whole package that has to be examined.  

https://www.fangraph...pitchers-took/ and this is a good article that helps show that there really is a large number of pitchers who will have to step up their pace.  http://www.sportsone...ers-pitch-clock

Edited by mikelink45, 19 January 2018 - 02:50 PM.


#52 nicksaviking

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Posted 19 January 2018 - 03:19 PM

 

Can't say I really have a "problem" with most of those proposed additions with the one exception being players talking to the pitcher or "visiting" the mound. That has been a part of the game since it's inception and IMHO should be left alone.

 

 

Yeah but unless they're filming it with audio for a live action Bull Durham show the nuance is lost on the fans.

 

Scrap the mound visits by everyone, let players wear ear pieces while they are on the field. That'll speed the game up.


#53 spycake

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Posted 19 January 2018 - 04:31 PM

This might be a bigger deal than I first imagined. FanGraphs has pitcher pace info. Not a single qualified starter had a pace under 20 seconds last year. The two slowest were Sonny Gray (28.3) and Alex Cobb (27.3). In a game where those two squared off and each threw 100 pitches, the 20-second pitch clock would save 26 minutes.

That's even before we apply that same idea to the bullpens, who are even slower. Pedro Baez, Bud Norris and Joaquin Benoit all averaged more than 30 seconds between pitches last year.


Does that include when runners are on base?

I thought previous pitch clock implementations had a different time limit with runners on base too...

#54 Lee-The-Twins-Fan

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Posted 19 January 2018 - 04:48 PM

 

I would think a 'mound visit' is anything that can't be done within the pitch clock time. If the catcher can talk to the pitcher when returning the ball and they can deliver the pitch before the timer hits bottom, no problem. If they have to call time for the visit, then it's a mound visit.

My point is, the 20-second clock starts when the PITCHER receives the ball. So if the catcher can hang on to the ball a few seconds, it still would not count as a mound visit.


#55 tvagle

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Posted 19 January 2018 - 05:58 PM

I reject pace of the off-season!

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#56 Circus Boy

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Posted 19 January 2018 - 06:13 PM

Don't need no clock. Two things would speed up the game toot sweet:

 

1. No more walk-up music for batters; and

 

2. Call a bigger strike zone, so batters are up there swinging.

 

 

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#57 Nine of twelve

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Posted 19 January 2018 - 06:27 PM

 

hell, I'd like a rule mandating a pitcher must face at least 3 batters, barring injury. the many many pitching changes gets very old.

Never.


#58 Nine of twelve

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Posted 19 January 2018 - 06:41 PM

 

 

Scrap the mound visits by everyone, let players wear ear pieces while they are on the field. That'll speed the game up.

Who gets earpieces? Who gets mics? All 9 players on the field, all coaches, the manager, the stats consultant?

Who controls the security of communication, and how? Players cover their mouths when talking because cameras zeroing in on conversations are subject to lip-reading. Bullpen phones are hard wired rather than cellular for the security reasons.

I know your suggestion was well-meaning and possibly partly tongue-in-cheek, but I don't think it's anywhere close to viable.


#59 Nine of twelve

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Posted 19 January 2018 - 06:43 PM

 

 

2. Call a bigger strike zone, so batters are up there swinging.

Amen! One of the biggest differences in approach of batters compared with 50 years ago is working the count. A bigger zone would help a lot, however, we don't need an increase in the number of K's, so lower the mound a bit as well to take some of the advantage away from the pitcher.

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#60 Nine of twelve

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Posted 19 January 2018 - 06:45 PM

Batter time clock? Sure. Pitcher time clock? With bases empty, sure. With any base occupied, never.




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