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Minor League Baseball institutes rule changes, pace of play initiatives

Media Day With the Harrisburg Senators

Extra innings will look a little different at Harrisburg Senators’ games this season.

Last week, Minor League Baseball announced various rule changes, all related to the pace of play initiatives put in place to speed up the game.

However, the biggest change among the new rules pertains to extra innings.

Now, once the 10th inning begins, a runner will immediately be placed at second base, according to MILB.com.

The rule change has been explained as follows:

  • At all levels of Minor League Baseball, extra innings will begin with a runner on second base. The runner at second base will be the player in the batting order position previous to the leadoff batter of the inning (or a substitute for that player). By way of example, if the number five hitter in the batting order is due to lead off the 10th┬áinning, the number four player in the batting order (or a pinch-runner for such player) shall begin the inning on second base. Any runner or batter removed from the game for a substitute shall be ineligible to return to the game, as is the case in all circumstances under the Official Baseball Rules.
  • For purposes of calculating earned runs under Rule 9.16, the runner who begins an inning on second base pursuant to this rule shall be deemed to be a runner who has reached second base because of a fielding error, but no error shall be charged to the opposing team or to any player.

Among the other rule changes are instituting a 15-second pitch clock, and a mound visit limit in which the amount depends on what level of the minor leagues you are at.