MLB rule changes: The 2022 season will have several new rule changes for Major League Baseball.
The new collective bargaining agreement between Major League Baseball and the MLBPA will bring several new rule changes for the 2022 season.
Here are some of the new rules tweeted by MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand.
With Opening Day just around the corner, let’s take a look at those new rules.
MLB rule changes
Designated Hitter Rule
Also known as the “Ohtani Rule” for two-way player Shohei Ohtani, this rule affords the ability for starting pitchers to hit for themselves. This person will be considered two separate people. If this player is replaced as a pitcher, they may continue as the designated hitter. If he is replaced as the designated hitter, he may remain in the game as a pitcher.
If the player is replaced as both pitcher and hitter, he can not be replaced by another two-way player.
Players such as Ohtani, Adam Wainwright, and Madison Bumgarner may benefit from this rule.
Active Roster Limits
Between Opening Day, April 7 through May 1, the limit on the number of active players on a team will increase to 28 players, and 29 players for any doubleheader during this period. On May 2, the number of active players will return to 26, with 27 players being the limit on days when a doubleheader is played.
Prior to May 2, pitchers and two-way players will be eligible to be placed on a 10-day injured list. After May 2, these players will be eligible for the 15-day injured list. A player must remain for 10 days on an option assignment or outright assignment before recall or re-selection before May 2.
Option assignments prior to May 2 will not count toward the agreement that would limit options for any player, up to five.
MLB Extra Innings Rule
In an effort to preserve the health and safety of players, the league agreed to continue the rule that each extra inning begins with a runner on second. The batter, or substitute, who leads off the inning will be the next batter in the line-up. The runner at second will be the last hitter from the team’s previous half-inning.
Any runner or batter previously removed from the game will be ineligible to return to the game for this situation.
For the purpose of calculating runs, the runner who begins the inning at second base is deemed to have reached second base due to a fielding error, but an error will not be assessed to the opposing team.
MLB Playoff Format
The rules changes from the new CBA also include a significant change to the MLB postseason playoffs.
Each of the six division winners will earn a playoff berth. The division winners with the two best records will receive a first-round bye. The remaining division winner and three wild cards would meet in best-of-three wild card series.
For fans of chaos, this, unfortunately, removes the need for tie-breaking games to determine division winners or final playoff participants.