Tuesday, both MLB and MLBPA came to terms on a new set of rules, and if the owners ratify the rules next week, they will go into effect for the 2022 season. The new rules in question are, expanded rosters, extra innings “ghost runner,” nine-inning doubleheaders, and a rule known as the “Ohtani Rule.”
Due to the shortened 3.5 weeks of spring training, the league will expand rosters from 26 to 28 through May 1st. An interesting aspect of the rule allows teams to carry as many pitchers as they want on their roster through the May 1st cutoff.
On May 2nd, teams will be required to cut down to 26 men on the major league roster and must have a maximum of 13 pitchers on the roster.
Extra Innings Runner
One of the more controversial aspects of the rules is set to return for the 2022 season, but only the 2022 season. NY Post’s article made that very clear in their article on Tuesday.
Doubleheaders Back To Normal
Although some non-traditional rules are back, the traditional nine-inning doubleheaders are back. There is no word on if the traditional doubleheaders are just for the 2022 season or the remaining life of the newly signed CBA.
Shohei Ohtani Rule
One of the most interesting rules that will go into effect is the “Ohtani Rule.” Essentially, if a pitcher is also hitting in the DH spot, he remains in the game as a DH, even if he gets pulled. The league mentioned that this is a way to promote more two-way players in the sport.
The NY Post article by Joel Sherman mentioned that this rule would be in play for the entirety of the new CBA, not just the 2022 season. No one is sure if Bubba Chandler will be in the majors by then, but one can imagine that this rule will also affect him if the Pirates continue to develop him as a two-way player.