After closing out the MLB sign stealing investigation with a public apology from the Houston Astros, the League now plans to institute a new rule allowing batters to request their own pitches in order to make everyone happy.
Commissioner Rob Manfred released a statement on the investigation and outlined how the MLB plans to handle violations of this nature in the future, but many players are still upset over the lack of punishment given to the Astros. As well as Manfred's "it's just a piece of metal," comment referring to the World Series trophy.
“We give up," said Manfred who seemed defeated. "We’ve uncovered so much cheating in baseball this that its been deemed impossible to police. It turns out the Houston Astros were just the tip of the iceberg. Apparently all 30 teams cheat, some just do it better than others. The Astros and Red Sox? Excellent cheaters. But the Detroit Tigers? Lousy lousy cheaters.”
“To properly address this wide-spread problem, we will no longer allow catchers to signal pitch selection to pitchers. Instead, batters will now be allowed to request both the pitch and pitch location they want to see. We think of this as an effort to get baseball back to its roots. Well into the 1880s batters could call their own pitches.”
Manfred further noted that the best way to deal with rule or law breaking is to take away the incentive. “If banks had no money in them, there would be no bank robberies,” he said.
Manfred believes this change could potentially lengthen the game quite a bit, with the average game time expected to extend beyond five hours. “With every batter knowing what pitch is coming, I think scores of 32-29 will become commonplace,” he noted. “Every fan will also know when, for example, the batter calls for a hanging breaking-ball. It’ll be sort of like beer league softball, without quite so much beer in the dugout.”
The MLB does see the lengthy games as a boon for its advertising partners. “Who doesn’t want to see more commercials during games?” Manfred asked.