It’s time to shake up baseball for a game or two as only independent baseball can.
Thanks to the San Rafael Pacifics and the Vallejo Admirals of the Pacific Association, the first ever timed professional baseball game will take place on August 5th 2016.
The Pacifics sent out the following press release today (August 4, 2016):
The Worst Baseball Idea Ever
The Pacifics and Vallejo Admirals to Play a Timed Game for the First Time in Baseball History
San Rafael, CA – The San Rafael Pacifics and Vallejo Admirals have agreed to make history by playing an official game on the clock. For the first time ever in professional baseball, a ball game will be timed at two hours and 30 minutes. This ridiculous idea has the team believing that the game will be a complete failure. Baseball games are not meant to be timed, but to be enjoyed one pitch at a time. “I think this is a terrible idea,” said Pacifics President and General Manager Mike Shapiro. “I never want to see this happen in baseball. But since there is so much criticism discussion about speeding up the game, we want to show the critics what a dumb idea it is.” The first timed game will be held at Albert Park, home of the San Rafael Pacifics, on August 5 at 7:05 PM against the Vallejo Admirals. The Admirals will then continue with the horrible idea and host another timed game at their home field, Wilson Park. The game will take place on August 7 at 1:05 PM.The two teams will complete a full baseball game under a 2:30 game clock, along with other strict pace of play restrictions.The rules for the “Game on the Clock” games are as follows:
- Pitchers will have 20 seconds from their last pitch to the next pitch. If the pitcher exceeds that time limit, the batter will receive a ball. The batter must remain in the batter’s box during that time. If, in the plate umpire’s opinion, the batter is at fault for the pitch time limit to be exceeded, the batter will receive a strike.
- Between innings, the first pitch of the inning must be thrown within two minutes of the last pitch of the prior inning. The pitcher will be assessed with a ball if he exceeds the time limit.
- At the conclusion of the running 2:30 game clock, it will be the last inning of play. If the home team is in the lead, the visiting team shall complete its time at bat. If the visiting team is in the lead, the home team may finish its time at bat.
- The umpire will record the start time and once the two hours and 30 minutes is up, no inning shall begin, except in the case of a tie. Innings that are in process when the time limit is reached will be completed as necessary.
- If the game ends in a tie, the international tie-breaker rules shall be in effect such that each manager will select two consecutive batters from anywhere in their respective lineups to start the playoff inning on first and second base. The next batter in the lineup would then be the batter that starts the inning at the plate. Once those players/runners are determined for the playoff inning, the order of any subsequent innings will be determined by how the previous inning ended.
For example, if the first playoff inning ends with the No. 6 hitter having the last official at bat, then the following inning begins with the No. 7 hitter at bat, and then the No. 5 hitter at second base and the No. 6 hitter at first base.
- The inning will otherwise proceed as usual, with each team getting a turn at bat. Should the player starting the inning on second base eventually score, it will count in the statistics as a run for the player and an RBI for the batter who drove him in (if applicable), but will not count towards the pitcher’s earned-run average. This will continue so forth and so on until a winner is determined. Both visiting and home teams will have an opportunity to bat in the playoff innings.