Major League Baseball made some rules changes today. Trips to the mound will now be timed at 30 seconds and that time begins at the moment in which they leave the dugout. There is no real penalty for the trip lasting any longer though, it’s simply a trip to the mound for the umpire to break things up. We will see if this actually changes anything.

The time between innings has also been shortened, going from 2:25 to 2:05. In theory, that will shave roughly six minutes of game time.

The neighborhood play at second base is also now a reviewable play. In the past it hasn’t been. Coupled with that rule is another rule which governs how players are allowed to slide into the bag. From Jeff Passan at Yahoo, here is how the new rule works:

  • Slide prior to reaching the base.
  • Slide so you are able to and attempt to reach or touch the base.
  • Slide so you are able to and attempt to stay on the base.
  • Do not change your pathway to the base.

I’m glad that Major League Baseball is trying to change their slide rule to avoid injuries, but these rules still allow you to take out the fielder with slides that are absolutely, 100% intended to take out the fielder. If the two sides were serious about protecting the players, they would have gone with the college rules which allow you to only slide directly into the bag. There is no sideways sliding to where you can somehow still touch the bag with some part of your body and take out a player seven feet from the bag because you can still touch it with your hand while throwing your legs at a player. We will see how this works, but realistically, this just sounds like the rules that were already in place and were never enforced.

The Chicago Cubs have re-signed Dexter Fowler. That’s sort of Reds related news because he was reportedly about to sign with Baltimore Orioles, who now are in need of an outfielder. The Orioles tried trading for Jay Bruce earlier this offseason. Could the two sides get back to together and make strides in a trade? We will see, but the Orioles certainly have more motivation today than they did earlier.