MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred Discusses How To Speed Up Game During TV Appearance On NESN
Major League Baseball has a pace of play problem. This problem has driven a good number of casual fans away from the game altogether. The commissioner’s office has made attempts as of late to try and combat the issue. But these attempts have done little to improve the pace of play issue.
On Wednesday, MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred addressed questions surrounding a pitch clock, mound visits and the increased use of technology, while also expressing optimism that the two sides could reach an agreement.
“There’s actually a playing rule provision in the basic agreement as to how you change a playing rule,” Manfred said. “I’m hopeful that we’re gonna have some nice positive conversations about our ideas, some ideas I know Tony [Clark] and the players have and hopefully get a set of changes for next year that’ll help us a little bit on the pace of play.”
One possible solution involves equipping pitchers with ear pieces in order to reduce the number of mound visits, something Manfred supports.
“Some of those things in terms of using technology, are worth thinking about,” Manfred said. “In terms of not changing the game, still giving the manager the ability to communicate, but moving things along.”
When asked whether giving umpires mics to better communicate what happens during replays, he sounded a bit hesitant.
“I think it would be fan friendly on the one hand,” Manfred said. “I think our hesitancy with it, it’s another delay in the game and obviously we’re trying to avoid those things.”
He stopped short of saying that he would like to see pitchers required to face more than one hitter, indicating that rule changes need to be careful not to mess with a game’s outcome.
“I’d like to get at the real dead-time issues first,” Manfred said.