If you are a fan of baseball, you probably already know about the new rules that Major League Baseball has put in place for 2023.
There are three major rules that have been added to help the game be faster and more fun. The three rules are timed pitches (a pitch clock), larger bases, and banning the defensive shift.
How will these rule changes affect the White Sox? I decided to examine how this would help or hurt the pitchers and the batters (for the pitch clock), the defense (for the shift ban), and Tim Anderson, along with Luis Robert (for the larger bases).
The pitch clock is something that has been needed. The pace of games should improve with the pitch clock but how will it affect the players on the field?
The Chicago White Sox are going to be impacted by the new rules.
Obviously, pitchers are going to have to be more diligent when going to the plate because of all the different facets that are involved in this pitch timer rule change.
For example, the new rules limit the number of pickoff attempts that a pitcher can attempt. They can only disengage twice from the rubber pitcher’s mound during one plate appearance.
Batters must be ready as well and can’t take the time to get set and do their rituals at the mound. Things will move faster and it’s all to make the game much quicker.
White Sox pitchers must adjust to the game's pace and pay more attention to their mechanics and what is happening around them.
They will have to be sharp in remembering all the new nuances of the game they have played for so long. Granted, there may be some hiccups, but after a while, they will settle in and get used to the new changes. Batters too must get used to a quicker pace.
Banning the shift is an interesting move by Major League Baseball. It’s an effort to create more offense and is probably one of the least talked about of the three major rule changes this year.
How will the shift affect the White Sox? It’s going to do what it was designed for and increase the number of ground balls that get hit in the gaps between first and second base. The number of runs in games will increase which is what is desired.
More offense makes the game more exciting and baseball’s leaders want it to be more exciting for its fans.
Guys like Tim Anderson and Elvis Andrus are going to have to show their athleticism to keep balls from getting into the outfield. They aren’t going to be able to stop every ball from getting through but it will be fun to see them try.
Finally, the last major rule that baseball has put in place is that they have increased the size of the bases from 15 inches to 18 inches, square. The hopes here are that this will increase the base stealing efforts by teams.
A couple of players on the team that this might affect are Anderson and Luis Robert. Granted, they didn’t have an astronomical amount of stolen bases last season (Anderson had 13 and Robert had 11) but this season (and beyond) they should be much more tempted and able to steal bases.
A stolen base is one of the most exciting plays in baseball and having more of them will make the game that much more interesting. And if the White Sox can steal more bases, then they will win more games.