MLB’s pitch clock already delivering massive change to games

MLB’s pitch clock already delivering one massive change to games
from Mike Santa Barbara, with

Major League Baseball has instituted several changes ahead of the 2023 season in an effort to bring more action to the game while increasing the entertainment value for fans.

One of the more significant changes was the addition of the pitch clock, adopted to help speed the game up. While baseball purists might not be crazy about the idea of a pitch clock, it’s already doing its job, even in spring training games.

Per ESPN’s Jeff Passan, game lengths are already down significantly. On Friday, the San Diego Padres and Seattle Mariners wrapped up their contest in two hours and 29 minutes, while the Texas Rangers and Kansas City Royals went four minutes longer at two hours, 33 minutes.

While it’s only been a few games, and spring training games are well-known for their briskness, it’s a sign of things to come.

According to data from Statista, the average MLB game took three hours and three minutes to complete in 2022. If that seems long, last year’s number was down by seven minutes from the previous year.

Since 2012, baseball games have hovered over the three-hour mark, leading MLB to experiment with the pitch clock in the minor leagues during the 2022 season. Adding the pitch clock had the desired impact, dropping minor league game times by 25 minutes last year to an average of two hours and 38 minutes.

It’s a short sample size, but the proof is in the pudding. And right now, it says that MLB games in 2023 will operate at a much faster pace than we’re used to.