Heading into the baseball season, there were some questions as to how the new MLB pitch clock would work out. Traditionalists were against the new addition to the game, despite the fact that it would help end games dragging on for no reason.
It took some time for the players to get used to the new way of life, but after a short while, things fell into place. And to the credit of MLB commissioner Rob Manfred, the pitch clock ended up being a major success.
Games took far less time this season to conclude, and that extra time was given back to both the players and fans. Throughout the 2023 season, only nine games that were the normal length, nine innings, eclipsed the three-hour and 30-minute mark.
If you compare that to last season, the results are incredible. There were 231 games last year that did go over the three-hour and 30-minute mark, so the pitch clock did work out the way it was planned too.
The shorter games are more enjoyable for the viewers, and they also force players to get on with the show. At times in the past, the players would take their sweet time to do anything, and it caused more headaches for everyone involved.
This helped modernize the game of baseball, and that could help drive up viewership moving forward. The sport was in desperate need of something to change, and this seems to be the first step in helping things.
As we enter into the final week of the regular season, Manfred deserves praise for this decision. For all of the bad publicity that he gets, this was a win for himself that he can use going forward.
It’ll be interesting to see how the pitch clock affects things in the playoffs when games get a little tighter. But with the postseason getting started next week, it’s time for all eligible teams to turn their sights towards winning the piece of metal that Manfred so richly has spoken about.
Photo Credit: Kiyoshi Mio-USA TODAY Sports
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