Reporters tracked down Rob Manfred this week to ask him a few questions in regards to the new slide rule. And Manfred shows some transparency we haven’t see in some time. It was sort of refreshing. We all know that MLB is working toward eliminating take out slides at second. And we all know the real reason behind it. We’ve just never seen someone actually admit it before.
“We started talking to the union about this. It is another example of the issue of player safety, which is really high on our radar screen. We’ve got a lot of money invested in ballplayers. The players themselves have tremendous playing opportunities in terms of what they can earn. And I think it’s important that we protect them.
In the end, we always knew it was about the money and not the players actually caring about the well-being of it’s players, but at least in this scenario the two agendas line up. Owners don’t want to pay players to have broken legs, fans don’t want to see star players on the sidelines, and the Unions want to ensure players earn additional value and worth.
For his part, Rob does not seem to optimistic we will have any solid rules in place for 2016.
“I hate to admit this, but I think the way we had to work through the home-plate situation gives you a feel for how difficult it is to write that kind of rule that involves in-game action and an important part of the game,’’
I get it’s a tough rule to write. Take your time if you have to, just get it right. There will always be someone upset at rule changes, and it seems there’s a group of people who get very worked up over taking out any sort of contact, but in the end it will result in a better game for everyone.