Some big changes are coming to MLB this season and in 2020.
The league announced Thursday that several new changes have been implemented, which will start opening day this season.
One huge discussion that has been controversial in the league was the use of a pitching clock, but that idea has been put on the back burner for the remainder of this Collective Bargaining Agreement. The current CBA expires in 2021.
The changes in 2019 are as follows:
- Inning breaks will be reduced from 2:05 to 2:00 in local games and 2:25 to 2:00 in national games. The breaks could be reduced further in 2020.
- Mound visits will be reduced from six to five per inning.
- Trade waivers will be eliminated, but the July 31 trade deadline will remain the same. Players can be placed on waivers after that date, but can’t be outright traded.
- All-Star fan voting will now be conducted in two rounds, with teams nominating one player per position in the first round (three outfielders per team). The fans then can vote on position players. In June or July, an “Election Day” will be held where the top three players in each position who got the most votes will be voted on again by fans to determine the All-Star starters.
- The three players in each position who got the most votes will receive an All-Star bonus.
- Prize money for the players on the winning All-Star team will be increased.
- Both teams in the All-Star game will start the 10th inning with a runner on second base.
- The total prize money for the Home Run Derby will be increased to $2.5 million, with the winner receiving a $1 million bonus.
- The creation of a joint committee, which consists of MLB committee members and MLBPA committee members.
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In the 2020 season, the following changes will occur:
- The active roster limit from opening day until Aug. 31 will increase from 25 players to 26. The postseason also will see the one-player increase.
- For doubleheaders, the roster limit will go from 26 players to 27.
- From Sept. 1 until the postseason, all teams will have 28 players on the active roster.
- The number of pitchers on the active roster will be determined by a joint committee of MLB and the MLBPA. Each player who is not a pitcher must be designated a position before his first day on the active roster.
- Starting and relief pitchers must pitch a minimum of three batters or the end of a half inning, with the exception of illness or injury.
- The minimum period a pitcher can be placed on the injury list extends from 10 days to 15. Each case is subjected to input from the joint committee.
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