Minor League Baseball announces new pace-of-play rule changes

SAN DIEGO, CA - SEPTEMBER 30: Michel Baez /

Minor League Baseball announced new changes to extra inning rules aimed at reducing game times and the number of mound visits.

Minor League Baseball has some new rules for extra innings, and they have the Internet in a tizzy.

The changes that will take effect in Minor League Baseball include all extra-inning games beginning with a base runner on second. How will teams select that player? Per the new rules, he will be the player who preceded the leadoff hitter in the batting order, usually the player who made the last out or a pinch runner for that player.

If the placed runner scores, it would be considered a unearned run.

Also per the new rules, coaching visits will be limited based on the levels. Single A coaches will have 10 visits, Double A will have eight visits and Triple A will have six visits. If the game goes to extra innings, each team will get one mound visit.

Pitchers at the Triple A and Double A levels will have a 15 second pitch clock with no base runners and a 20 second pitch clock with base runners. The pitcher will have that amount of time to get into their pitching motion. If they fail to, then the base runner will be rewarded a ball.

The new rules so far have been well-received by farm directors:

We could one day MLB add similar rules. The changes could be seen as testing grounds for future MLB changes and their initiatives in trying to speed up the game. However, many won’t be in favor of the changes, the players in particular.

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The changes will go into affect on April 20. Players will have a grace period from April 5th through the 19th. Where players will only receive a warning for any infractions.