Cubs fans – is it time to change the game we all love so much?

(Photo by Nuccio DiNuzzo/Getty Images)
(Photo by Nuccio DiNuzzo/Getty Images) /

This may not be the discussion you think it is. I’m not talking about the Cubs team here. I’m discussing changes to the game of baseball, as a whole.

The other night, Cubs broadcasters Boog Sciambi and Jim Deshaies were talking about the current batting average for Major League Baseball players. It is a measly .236, one point below the .237 from 1968. That average led to the initiation of “The Gibson Rule” featuring lowering the mound by five inches, from fifteen inches to ten inches above the level of home plate.

Interestingly enough, Gibson took offense at the rule lowering the mound that is ascribed to him:

"“Why should they take away the pitcher’s livelihood because he becomes proficient at it?” Gibson asks. “That, to me, seems like what they did. The hitters weren’t doing very well against you so they say ‘Well, we’re going to fix that.’ I still might sue baseball for that.”"

More from Cubbies Crib

Cubs: Other changes were made, as well

Baseball also changed the strike zone in 1969. The old zone was from the shoulders to the knees, while the new one became from the armpits to the knees. There was also an increased effort to detect pitchers who were doctoring the ball. These changes apparently worked. They helped fuel an increase in runs per game from 6.84 to 8.14.

Now we seem to be in another offensive crisis for baseball. So what’s to be done?

Some possible suggestions for the game

There are several ideas floating around the baseball world these days. One is lowering the mound again. Would that mean that the ‘mound’ would only be five inches tall? Not much of a mound.

Another idea is moving the mound back farther from home plate. Currently the distance from the pitching rubber to the back point of home plate is 60’ 6”. Would moving it back two feet make for a difference? 

Finally, an idea that I have heard mentioned several times is outlawing the ‘shift’. I assume that would involve making a rule that there had to be two infielders on either side of second base. This change would likely most benefit left-handed hitters as they seem to be victims of the shift more than right-handers.

dark. Next. Cubs' Ian Happ is scorching hot right now

I don’t know if any of these changes will be instituted, but it makes for interesting discussions. Perhaps Cubs fans out there have other ideas as to how to put more ’offense’ into the game?