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Offishial news, 2/9/21: MLB keeps crazy rule; 2021 Marlins NRIs

We’re anticipating even more Marlins breaking news on Tuesday.

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Let’s get gimmicky

Major League Baseball and the MLB Players’ Association reached an agreement Monday night on health and safety protocols that will help them navigate through a second straight pandemic season. The agreement also includes the renewal of two gameplay rules from the 2020 season: seven-inning doubleheaders and starting each extra inning with a runner on second base.

Nearly one-quarter of all Marlins games last year were part of doubleheaders. The innings reduction greatly benefited the Fish, minimizing the influence of their vulnerable bullpen en route to posting a 10-4 record in such games (21-25 record in all other games). But with the majority of Americans expected to receive their COVID-19 vaccinations by summer’s end, virus-related postponements will hopefully be far less frequent in 2021.

The extra-inning rule remains absurd. If the industry is trying to deter super long games—those that end too late for fans to watch, leave athletes more susceptible to injury and get decided by position players pitching—then there are better solutions than this.

The two sides failed to include the universal designated hitter rule in their agreement.

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