Tag Archives: MLB

MLB, Atlantic League Announce Additional Rule Changes for Second Half

At the beginning of the season, Indy Ball Island reported about the partnership between the MLB and the Atlantic League. This partnership included experimental rules that the MLB wanted to try, but didn’t want to implement in their own minor league system.

Now, they have announced additional rule changes for the second half of the season, starting tomorrow (July 12th).

MLB-Rules-Graphic-ALPB

Four new initiatives to debut in Atlantic League games beginning Friday, July 12
(Lancaster, Pa., July 11, 2019) – Major League Baseball (MLB) and the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball (ALPB) announced today four additional experimental playing rules that will be in place during the second half of the 2019 Atlantic League Championship Season. The list of changes is as follows:

  • Pitcher is required to step off the rubber in order to attempt a pickoff
  • One (1) foul bunt is permitted with two strikes before a strikeout is called
  • Batters may “steal” first base on any pitch not caught in flight (the batter can be thrown out if he attempts to run)
  • “Check swing” rule made more batter-friendly

These new experimental playing rules will be used along with the current rules and equipment changes that were put in place at the start of the 2019 season. These include:

  • Home plate umpire assisted by radar tracking system and an MLB-defined strike zone
  • No mound visits permitted by players or coaches other than pitching changes and medical visits
  • Pitchers must face a minimum of three batters or reach the end of an inning before they can exit the game, unless the pitcher becomes injured
  • Increase size of bases from 15 inches square to 18 inches square
  • Time between innings and pitching changes reduced from 2:05 to 1:45

MLB will analyze the effects of these changes before deciding on potential additional modifications for the 2020 ALPB Championship Season.

The experimental playing rule and equipment changes are part of a new three-year agreement between MLB and ALPB. The agreement covers the transfer of players from ALPB to MLB and enhances MLB’s scouting coverage of ALPB games. MLB will continue to provide statistical and radar tracking data from ALPB games to MLB Clubs.

“We have seen a tremendous amount of interest in these initiatives from our players, coaches and fans throughout the first half of the season,” said Rick White, ALPB President. “We look forward to working further with Major League Baseball and observing these additional rule changes in action throughout the remainder of the year.”

About the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball (ALPB) 

With eight teams in the Mid-Atlantic and Texas, the ALPB is a leader in baseball innovation and a player gateway to Major League Baseball. Through its exclusive partnership with MLB, the Atlantic League tests Major League Baseball rules and equipment initiatives. The Atlantic League has sent over 900 players to MLB organizations while drawing more than 40 million fans to its affordable, family-friendly ballparks throughout its 22-year history.

For more information, please visit www.AtlanticLeague.com.

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Atlantic League All-Star Game To Feature Electronic Balls and Strikes

Earlier this year, Indy Ball Island reported that the Atlantic League, in partnership with the MLB, would introduce various experimental rules throughout the season.

The league planned to gradually implement electronic balls and strikes through the use of radar tracking technology. It seems that time has come.

Today, the Atlantic League announced the use of electronic balls and strikes for their upcoming All-Star game.

Official Atlantic League Press Release

Automated Ball-Strike System to begin assisting umpires July 10 at PeoplesBank Park in York, Pa.

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(York, Pa., July 3, 2019) – The 2019 Atlantic League All-Stars will make baseball history when they step into the batter’s box next Wednesday for pitches called with the assistance of an automated ball-strike system (ABS). One of the most anticipated rules initiatives resulting from the new partnership between Major League Baseball (MLB) and the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball (ALPB), ABS will leverage modern technology to provide a consistent strike zone to pitchers and hitters. The home plate umpire will continue to perform all of his normal duties but will be assisted in ball-strike calling by ABS.

Atlantic League President Rick White said that after several months of testing, both parties are confident that the technology and umpires are ready to begin use of the system.

“The working relationship between MLB, ABS vendor TrackMan, the umpires, and our teams has been terrific,” said White. “After carefully installing, testing, and tweaking the system to make the transmission of the information to the umpire quick and reliable, we feel ABS is ready for prime time.”

Featuring players from each of the eight ALPB teams, the Atlantic League All-Star game returns to York for the first time since 2011. The York Revolution, winners of three league titles, joined the league in 2007 and play in PeoplesBank Park in downtown York. First pitch is slated for 7:30 p.m.

The day of the All-Star Game will start with a wide variety of family-friendly activities in the Judgement Free Fun Zone presented by Planet Fitness on the Brooks Robinson Plaza, followed by the pre-game home run derby. Legendary Baltimore Orioles Brooks Robinson and Andy Etchebarren (a former Revolution manager) will serve as honorary co-captains, all-time Revolution great Corey Thurman will help Revolution radio broadcaster Darrell Henry “call” the home run derby from the field, and the fan-favorite ZOOperstars! will make their only appearance at PeoplesBank Park this year during the game. At the game’s conclusion the Star-Blazing Spectacular presented by AAA Southern Pennsylvania – the largest fireworks display in ballpark history – will launch from center field.

Tickets for the game are available at www.AllStarGameYork.com.

About the York Revolution

The York Revolution Professional Baseball Club is a member of the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball. The Revolution were Atlantic League Champions in 2010, 2011, and 2017. The 2019 season is the team’s 13th. Located at 5 Brooks Robinson Way, PeoplesBank Park hosts all 70 home games, in addition to myriad events through the entire calendar year. For tickets or more information, please call 717-801-HITS (4487) or visit the Revolution online at www.YorkRevolution.com.

About the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball (ALPB)

With eight teams in the Mid-Atlantic and Texas, the ALPB is a leader in baseball innovation and a player gateway to Major League Baseball. Through its exclusive partnership with MLB, the Atlantic League tests Major League Baseball rules and equipment initiatives. The Atlantic League has sent over 900 players to MLB organizations while drawing more than 40 million fans to its affordable, family-friendly ballparks throughout its 22-year history. For more information, please visit www.AtlanticLeague.com.