MLB has implemented yet another rule change. In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, MLB and the MLBPA have agreed to implement seven inning doubleheaders.
As MLB has had more postponed games and their season has been called into question , it’s had to become innovative. MLB will try seven-inning doubleheaders, which would drastically change the use of the bullpen and the results of games. The change introduces unique ideas and can arguably change the tide of a season for many teams. It’s a major change to the sport of baseball, but it’s seen as a necessary one.
Giving Weak Bullpens An Advantage
A team like the New York Mets – who have already blown multiple leads – would benefit dearly from this. They would no longer need long outings from the bullpen. They can rely on starting pitching and can get an easy complete (or close to complete game). I can see this going well for the Mets and other bad bullpens, but one team is built for this.
The team that I see getting the biggest advantage is the Nationals and their elite rotation. They can get three complete games from Max Scherzer, Stephen Strasburg, and Patrick Corbin and it would be ridiculous. They could hand the ball to Daniel Hudson for one inning and that would be the game. Teams with good starters and a great closer with weak depth are going to love this change.
Should MLB Do This For the Future of Double-Headers?
In my opinion I would say to keep an open mind with a shortened season. No changes are guaranteed to stick, and will only be used for this season unless fans enjoy it. We shouldn’t get too upset about this change, nor say whether it’s good or bad yet. Now, if teams with awful bullpens are able to win a bunch of games, would be livid.
Judgement of this move can only be determined by it’s outcomes. I do understand the frustrations of potentially taking away competitive integrity by giving a way out almost for bad bullpens. This move is understandable, but it’s definitely going to be fairly criticized if it flops.
MLB’s new rule can change the outcome of a lot of double-headers but this will certainly be interesting at the very least.
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