With the MLB Lockout many important potential rule changes have been put on hold. One of the biggies is the Designated Hitter (DH). In the pandemic season of 2020 the NL adopted the DH, ostensibly to keep pitchers safe, whatever that means. With pretty much every baseball league in the land using the DH, from all Minor Leagues and the American League to NCAA Baseball and beyond, it appears a near certainty that the DH is coming to the Senior Circuit.
There have been many interesting arguments, pro or con. Remember that game when Bruce Bochy let Madison Bumgarner hit for himself against the Athletics in Oakland in a game when the DH was available? I do. It was awesome. He hit a double!
- Pitchers will not get injured batting or trying to bunt/run the bases, etc.
- Games will be more offensive with more runs scored.
- Fans will be able to see more great hitters play longer careers.
- The Giants would need to develop more every-day hitters and find a place for them without worrying about defense.
- Every at-bat will be in question.
- Tradition, it’s not the NL game.
- A Pitcher should be a complete ballplayer and hit and run the bases.
- Strategy for Managing goes out the window/goodbye double-switch and critical pinch-hitting decisions.
- Just because everybody else is doing it doesn’t mean the NL needs to follow suit…
- The NL game is purer, more old-school and it is cool to have two brands of baseball in two different leagues.
Greek Giant’s Take
I am a bit on the fence, personally. I have been wondering if there was a middle ground and here is my proposal: Allow the DH as optional but once the starting pitcher is removed from the game the DH is also and future pitchers have to hit from themselves. This will allow for more strategy and more of a balance between the NL and AL game. Make the original DH, who was hitting for the pitcher, leave the game once the starting pitcher is out.
Below is the first in a new series of reader polls on TWG. The results will be announced in day or so or whenever I get around to it. Please Vote responsibly. There is no Electoral College here.