Winter Meetings Agenda

With the MLB Winter Meetings in Nashville rapidly approaching, here are a few meetings that Bud and his crew should schedule….

The first meeting should be with Bud and every team in the American League. In 2013, there will be 15 teams in the AL, and we need to take a new vote on the DH. Let’s say that Houston will vote to eliminate the DH since they never had one. Do you think there are seven other teams that would vote the same way?

The next meeting should be regarding the new schedule.

It might be too late to scrap the model adopted by baseball and change to a more balanced schedule in 2013, but it certainly is early enough to start on the 2014 schedule.

In 2013, each team will play 19 divisional games and 20 interleague against six different teams.

In 2014, a balanced schedule would have each team play 18 divisional games and 20 interleague games with five teams. Eliminating rivalry games every year will allow baseball to rotate a complete division with all teams playing in every park every three years.

Balanced schedule:

72 Interdivisional – four teams 18 games each
70 same league- ten teams seven games each
20 interleague- one complete five team division four games each

The next meeting will be called Wild Card Improvements.

The first thing needed to be done is to change the WC into a series, the WCS. Changing it into a three game series will make it more exciting for fans, and each team will have at least one home game.

Rules for tie breakers also needs modifying. If both teams qualify for post season, then they should never play a game in which the losing team advances, like what would have happened this past season if the Yankees and Baltimore tied.

The next meeting will be called Instant Replay.

Here is the proposal….

Each team will be allowed three wrong challenges per game.

Each team will have a red ball that would signify a challenge. When a team throws the challenge ball across the foul line, a challenge will start.

The challenge must be made within five seconds of the original call by any umpire. Any umpire call, except balls and strikes could be challenged.

After the red ball crosses the line, the four umpires will have 30 seconds to watch replays while staying on the field, using the giant screen in every park.

After 30 seconds, each umpire will signal their call. If the result is 2-2 then the original call stands.

All replays will be shown in every park, including balls and strikes.

Umpire Strikezone Scores will be included in every boxscore.

The next meeting will be for Rule Changes.

The first change will be called the Concussion Rule. If we change the current rule regarding collisions at the plate, baseball could eliminate a large proportion of concussions in the sport.

Buster Posey will be the star witness for this meeting. Ask Buster if he will ever block a plate again.

All we need to change is to modify the rule by giving the runner complete access of the plate, by creating a new rule, which states “any collision at the plate, will make the runner automatically safe.”

The second rule change would be to implement a rule for a Checked Swing.

The next meeting will be for Amateur Draft Rule Changes.

The first change would be to eliminate the bottom ten teams having a secured first round pick, even if they sign a top rated free agent.

Why tempt teams to tank at the end of the year, so they could be on this exempted list?

The next change would not give teams an extra first round pick the next year, if they fail to sign their first round pick.

There are many meetings scheduled in Nashville about baseball. If these few could be added, there is no doubt they all would be “for the good of the game.”

About Rick Swanson 91 Articles
Rick Swanson has been an online feature writer for numerous websites since 2005. He was also a speaker at Boston SABR meetings from 2007-2009. Rick has created three statistics for baseball.... Reaction over Range: A new way to measure defense. Divide reaction time of any play, by the range distance. Umpire Strikezone Score: Take the total number of correct pitches called, divided by the total number of pitches called. Power Pitching: Add WHIP plus ERA and subtract the number of strikeouts per inning. Rick's current title is Consultant, Red Sox and Fenway Park History. In 2007, he was nominated for President of Red Sox Nation by Red Sox team president, Larry Lucchino. You can email Rick here: rickswanson AT cox DOT net

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