Open in App
CBS Miami

Play Ball! Marlins open season against Mets

By CBS Miami Team,


It's Opening Day for the Miami Marlins 01:33

MIAMI - It's opening day for the Marlins.

They will kick off their 30th season as a franchise with a home game against the New York Mets.

The Marlins worked out Wednesday afternoon at loanDepot Park. Among the new faces was former American League champ Luis Arráez.

New manager Skip Schumaker is looking to lead Miami to a "bounce back" season after losing 93 games last season.

One guy that will certainly help is pitching ace Sandy Alcantara. The Cy Young Award winner will take the mound on Thursday. The first pitch is set for 4:20 p.m.

This season Major League Baseball is introducing a slew of brand-new regulations in the hopes of speeding up the pace of play, encouraging more game action, and making the sport more compelling to fans.

Pitch Timer
For the first time ever, MLB will utilize a pitch clock. Each inning break will be two minutes and 15 seconds, and there will be only 30 seconds allowed in between batters. Pitchers must begin their windup before the clock expires. They will have just 15 seconds between pitches with no runners on base, or 20 seconds with runners on base, to start their motion. If the timer hits zero, the runner gets an automatic ball.

Hitters will also be impacted by the time constraints. Batters must be in the box and looking at the pitcher in eight seconds or less, or else they get an automatic strike.

This season is the first time these time restrictions will be tested at the Major League level. However, MLB says they have tested the clock in more than 8,000 minor league games and in spring training games to prepare for this season.

Eliminating the Shift
The shift is a defensive strategy in which defending players move away from their traditional positions on the field into more optimal positioning for certain hitters. For example, when a left-handed player comes up to bat, the shortstop or third baseman might move over to right field. To put it simply, players shift their position to an area that the ball is more likely to get hit toward.

In recent years, the shift has become increasingly more popular and evolved into a staple of MLB. However, teams will no longer be able to employ the strategy.

Moving forward, infielders must keep both feet within the outer boundary of the infield when the pitcher starts in motion. Two infielders must be positioned on each side of second base when the pitch is released. And finally, infielders may not switch sides or move to the outfield unless there is a substitution.

Without the shift, fans can expect some players' batting averages to go up, more ground balls and doubles hit per game, and more athletic plays at second base.

Bigger Bases
The size of the bases will be increased by three inches. This should encourage more stolen bases, and according to MLB, decrease the number of injuries that occur near the bases.

Although the bigger base gives the defending player more room, the change is more advantageous to the runners. Because the bases are larger, the distances between first, second, and third bases are shortened by 4.5 inches.

Expand All
Comments / 0
Add a Comment
Local New York City, NY newsLocal New York City, NY
Most Popular newsMost Popular

Comments / 0