Mookie Betts News: Dodgers Outfielder Shares Thoughts on New Rules and Stolen Bases
On MLB Network’s Top 100 Right Now list, they named Mookie Betts the fourth-best player in the league. Both Betts and teammate, Freddie Freeman joined the network to talk about the accolade among things.
Although Betts was acknowledged on the list, analyst Harold Reynolds brought up the fact that Freeman actually stole more bases than Betts last season. In 2022, Betts stole 12 bases compared to Freeman’s 13, which was a career high.
Staying on the stolen base topic, Betts was asked if the new rules would affect his stolen base game in 2023. The changes include larger bases and limits on how many times a pitcher can attempt to pick off a runner. Would this lead to him stealing more bags again?
“That’s asking a lot. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve slowed down… I don’t know. Maybe. We’ll see. I’ll get over there to first and… I really don’t get that many opportunities because Freddie usually swings in the first two pitches so it’s hard for me. … But, probably not.”
The 30-year-old has certainly slowed down. In 2015, Betts averaged 28.7 feet per second on sprint speed, which was in the 91st percentile. He’s seen a decline since that year and dropped to 27.1 Ft/s in 2021. Last year, the outfielder was around the same at 27.3, which puts him in the 49th percentile.
It is understandable that Betts would not be as inclined to go out and swipe 30-plus bags any more. But maybe the rules will make it too tempting to pass up.
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