In a lazy and dramatic attempt to speed up the game of baseball, The MLB will propose a list of new potential rules. One of which would force pitchers to see a minimum of three batters. How Does this change the Chicago Cubs bullpen?
Rob Manfred has once again attempted to lure the millennial crowd back into baseball by speeding up the pace of play. Of the seven proposed rule changes the MLB produced, only one sticks out for all the wrong reasons. The idea that a three-batter minimum for pitchers would benefit the game is so incredibly outlandish.
This rule would only benefit us as Chicago Cubs fans when Andrew Miller is stranded on the bump after giving up two bombs with Kris Bryant walking up to give him his third of the inning. Outside of that, I see no added entertainment value with the three batter minimum rule.
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While we don’t know if this rule will be in effect for the 2019 season, it could drastically change the way Joe Maddon utilizes his assets in the bullpen and how we see guys deployed in games. For players like Randy Rosario and Brian Duensing, this rule could cripple their productivity.
Both of these Chicago Cubs pitchers are deployed to face a very limited number of batters because you can see a noticeable change in production depending on the handedness of the hitter, causing the lefty pitchers to often only see lefty hitters in a competitive game.
By looking at their lefty-righty splits, you can see these pitchers do not have the success in recording outs or limiting runs when facing a right-handed hitter. A small silver lining: Joe Maddon has far less flexibility to mismanage the bullpen if this rule is implemented.
This new rule proposed by the MLB would basically eliminate many lefty specialists from Major League Rosters. Players with serviceable skills like Rosario and Duensing have a place in baseball and should not be penalized by new rules because the younger generation has an issue with the pace of play. The crowd of fans that already like baseball want to watch the best hitter square up to the best pitcher. Make Baseball Fun Again!