Runner can stay on second base in extra innings, says Rob Manfred

Ronald Blum, The Associated Press

PHILADELPHIA — A rule allowing Major League Baseball teams to start extra innings with a runner on second base during the regular season may remain in place.

This is what Major League Baseball commissioner Rob Manfred indicated on Monday evening about this rule imposed during the pandemic to reduce the duration of games.

“The fans and the players both love him. The teams love him. I have a feeling that (this rule) has a hankering to go,” said Tuesday of the postponement of the third game of the World Series between the Houston Astros and the Philadelphia Phillies. Manfred illustrated after the Annunciation, because of the rain.

“Some people are emailing me that don’t like it,” he also said.

According to Elias Sports, home teams have posted a 113-103 cumulative record in extra innings this year, and are 262-263 in games requiring extra innings since the rule went into effect in 2020.

According to Elias Sports, home clubs posted a favorable 312–294 record in extra innings from 2017 to 2019.

Major League Baseball does not use this rule during the playoffs. In this year’s American League first round game, the Cleveland Guardians completed their best-of-three series sweep by defeating the Tampa Bay Rays 1-0 in 15 innings.

In the next round, the Astros swept their three-of-five series by defeating the Seattle Mariners 1–0 in 18 innings.

The extension of this Regulation requires the conclusion of an agreement with the Players’ Association.

“It’s a decision the players will have to make,” Tony Clark, director of the Players Association, said before the start of Game 1 of the World Series on Friday.

“It’s one of the things we have to talk to the players about.”

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