By Dan Jenkins
Major League Baseball is ramping up its effort to speed the game up and attract a younger audience.
MLB officials have recently proposed eliminating the four-pitch intentional walk and raising the strike zone, according to an ESPN report. The new rules must be approved by the Major League Baseball Players Association before they can go into effect.
“For either or both to take effect this season, an agreement would have to be reached “sooner rather than later,” said one source, because spring training games begin in just two and a half weeks.”
The proposed intentional walk rule would allow pitchers to send a batter to first base without having to throw four wide pitches to the catcher. No-pitch intentional walks and other proposed rules were experimented with in the Arizona Fall League.
In addition, a new strike zone rule would move the bottom of the strike zone from the bottom of the batter’s knee to the top of the knee — about two inches. The zone was lowered from the proposed position to the bottom of the knees prior to the 1996 season.
A full history of the strike zone can be read on the league’s website HERE.
New rules were implemented in 2015 that limited the amount of time between innings, pitching changes and the time a coach or manager can spend on the mound.