“You can’t steal first base” has been something told to every base stealer in baseball history. Yet now, coming to the independent Atlantic League is the chance for batters to steal first base; is that something that would make you more or less interested in watching a game?
Major League Baseball has worked out a three-year partnership deal with the independent Atlantic League that will see the eight east coast teams serve as a testing ground for ideas that MLB wants to see in live game action.
"In the second half of the season, the [Atlantic League] will allow batters to steal first base: Any pitch on any count not caught in flight will be considered a live ball, and a batter may run to first base, similar to a dropped third strike."
— Empty Seats Galore (@EmptySeatsPics) July 10, 2019
The plan for being able to “steal” first base would be along the lines of a dropped third strike; any pitched ball not caught out of the air will be deemed a live ball, which will give the batter the chance to run to first base. This new opportunity to “steal” first base will take place during the second half of the Atlantic League schedule, which comes after Wednesday’s All-Star game which will feature an automated ball-strike system being used for the first time in any professional baseball league (stay tuned for my take on that!).
The Atlantic League is going to allow players to steal first base. It won’t change much, but it’ll be interesting to see if a team can figure out how to use it effectively. pic.twitter.com/XU3DrqVMVF
— Matt Kirkle (@mattkirkle) July 13, 2019
So that’s it, baseball has “jumped the shark” and has no more ideas left on how to excite the fans, so we are going to allow batters to run to first base if the pitcher throws one in the dirt? Let’s get this straight, a pitcher throws a back foot slider, it hits the ground, the batter can run to first base and turn a 0-2 pitch into a steal of first base? Yes, right, that sounds like baseball, right? Why not just let the batter run to third base and call it a triple?
The Atlantic League is experimenting with the idea of batters being able to steal FIRST base…
— Starting 9 (@Starting9) July 12, 2019
As with any bad idea, I always ask this question: What other ideas were rejected for someone to settle on this main bad idea? I really hope that the Atlantic League is being paid a lot of money to try this idea and that all the players are getting their fair share of that money. I can’t wait for Major League Baseball to try and tell their fans how successful this idea went off in the Atlantic League and watch how fast that test balloon is shot down across the country by baseball players and writers.
Why are they even trying this “steal first base” rule? It will never make it up to the MLB so just stop. Dumbest rule I’ve ever heard.
— Blake Dudley (@BlakeJDudley) July 12, 2019
Time to go back to the drawing board Rob Manfred, assuming you are not too busy working on fixing “the pill” inside the baseballs for the World Series.