Don’t expect the designated hitter in both the National and American League–at least not yet. That was among the many topics addressed by Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred, who was at Busch Stadium on Monday.
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“I am not a believer that there needs to be a consistent policy for both leagues,” said Manfred with a smile. “I don’t have a lot of dissonance about the fact that the American League plays one way and the National League plays the other. I think it’s a topic that people like to debate. I think that’s a good thing for the game–when people talking about the game, that’s a good thing for the game. I’m perfectly content with the status quo.”
Manfred is in the midst of trying to visit every ML ballpark and meet with each players and executives with each team, noting that his Q&A’s with each clubhouse have already yielded positive results.
“In one of the meetings, a player put his hand up after I had talked about pace of game a little bit and he said ‘we played a 2:38 game yesterday and a bunch of guys got warning letters about violations of the batter’s box rule’ he said ‘why is that?’ And you know what, the player’s right,” shared Manfred. “We changed the way we were managing those warnings as result. Games of a certain length, we’re just not issuing warnings. That responsiveness has been important in terms of keeping the players committed to and engaged in the effort to keep the game moving along.”
The Commissioner also believes that MLB-blackout rule on streaming in local markets could be lifted soon and he expects exhibition play in Cuba as early as Spring Training in 2016.
–Still a couple of weeks away before he’s ready to discuss his injury, Adam Wainwright was back in the St. Louis Cardinals dugout before Monday’s game to meet with a group of children in a program with Cardinals Care.
Wainwright signed autographs and posed for pictures with the kids.
Wainwright, who was in a boot and used crutches to aid in walking, underwent Achilles surgery on April 30th after he tore the tendon a few days earlier running out a play to first base.
Manfred photo credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports