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Home & Garden MLB mulling seven-inning doubleheaders during shortened 2020 season, per report

20:57  30 july  2020
20:57  30 july  2020 Source:   msn.com

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The 2020 abbreviated Major League Baseball season is underway, and things have looked different. There are new rules, coronavirus health and safety protocols and games being played at fan-less ballparks. A change to the length of doubleheaders could be next. According to ESPN, the MLB Players Association (MLBPA) is discussing amongst its members about a possible proposal to alter doubleheaders for 2020.

a baseball player holding a bat on a field © Provided by CBS Sports

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The players' association is surveying members and might propose either two seven-inning games for a doubleheader, or nine innings for the opener and seven for the nightcap. A source confirmed to ESPN that Major League Baseball is checking opinions among owners and general managers, and league staff hope for a decision by Saturday to make a change or leave the rules the way the are.

Having seven-inning doubleheaders instead of a pair of nine-inning games is common practice in Minor League Baseball. In 2020, MLB is putting emphasis on packing in as many games as possible. With the potential shortening of doubleheader play from 18 innings to 14, it could be a possible way to give players more rest and lessen the risk of injury. Cutting down the number of innings played in a short period of time would ideally help players avoid serious injury in this 60-game season.

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According to The Athletic's Britt Ghiroli, the union is asking players to consider the rule adjustments as a way to "maximize their health." There is also the possibility that the league will extend the 30-man limit for additional time, per Ghiroli. As of now, the 30-man roster is supposed to drop to 28 players after two weeks, and then down to a 26-man roster two weeks later.

Following the Miami Marlinscoronavirus outbreak, MLB revised its schedule to include isolation time for clubs that may have been exposed to COVID-19. The Philadelphia Phillieswill return to play on Saturday following a five-day layoff for a doubleheader against the Toronto Blue Jays. It's unclear if they'll play nine- or seven-inning games.

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