MLB this week is holding an owners’ meeting in N.Y. that will be focused in part on potential rule changes to increase action on the field. MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred has said repeatedly he is looking for the league to have a more active role in managing changes in the game that have become dominated by the three true outcomes of strikeouts, walks and home runs. He indicated last week talks are heightening toward possible changes for the ’19 season. “I would like to see more balls in play,” Manfred said last week at the MLB Draft. “The easiest way to explain my own personal views, which may not ultimately be the views the owners adopt, is I’d like to get the game back a little closer to the way it’s been played historically. More balls in play. Fewer strikeouts. And it’s sacreligious to say, maybe even fewer home runs.” The league’s 16-member competition committee -- which includes Nationals Principal Owner Mark Lerner, Rangers co-Chair & Managing Partner Ray Davis, Blue Jays President & CEO Mark Shapiro and Cubs President of Baseball Operations Theo Epstein, among others -- are expected to make increased action a focal point for those discussions.
CLICK HERE TO LIKE: Meanwhile, owners are slated to hear an address tomorrow from Facebook Head of Global Sports Partnerships Dan Reed. Facebook this season began an expanded partnership with MLB that includes an exclusive 25-game package of games shown on Facebook Watch, representing the league’s first digital-only national broadcasts. This week’s owners’ meetings are the first in a new schedule for the league in which it has reduced the schedule of meetings from four times per year to three.