Massive MLB Rule Changes for 2019 and 2020 Become Official

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That is the macro matter, an understanding between the sides to continue negotiations about items such as the slowed free agent market and service time manipulation.

While the incentive is strong to fix fissures in the relationship - and perhaps even extend the current CBA, which guaranteed more than a quarter-century of labor peace amid $10 billion-plus a year in industry revenues - doing so will require significant compromise from both sides.

Major League Baseball and the MLB Players Association have agreed to a number of significant rule changes that will go into effect in the next two seasons, according to multiple reports.

Inning Breaks: Subject to discussions with broadcast partners, inning breaks will be reduced from 2:05 to 2:00 in local games, and from 2:25 to 2:00 in national games. Both are created to quicken pace.

The maximum number of mound visits will drop from six-to-five.

- The trade deadline is now July 31 - period. The Houston Astros acquired Justin Verlander from the Detroit Tigers on August 31, 2017, just minutes before the deadline expired.

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Contending teams will not only have to consider big areas to fix in July, but if they are thin in even a supplementary area they might have to consider acquisitions. "And we think having a single trade deadline could impact some of those decisions". No trades can occur after that date, but players can still be placed on waivers and claimed on outright waivers after that date.

In late June or early July, an "Election Day" will be held in which the top three vote-getters at each position in each League during the Primary Round (including the top nine outfielders) will be voted on by fans during a set time period to determine All-Star Game starters. That then triggers a second round of fan voting. 40 players was too many to allow but a number in the 30-32 range would've been better.

The victor of the Home Run Derby will now receive $1 million and total prize pool money for the competition increases to $2.5 million. From September 1st through the end of the championship season, all Clubs must carry 28 players on the active roster.

That will essentially put an end to position players taking the mound in a blowout. But, trust me, right now every organization is busy trying to find the loopholes in all of these rules.

Part of the agreement also states that pitchers must face three batters before being removed from the game.

Oct 26, 2018; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Boston Red Sox manager Alex Cora makes a pitching change against the Los Angeles Dodgers in the ninth inning in game three of the 2018 World Series at Dodger Stadium. But this already has been underway.

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