Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred envisions more experiments with speed-up rules, such as limiting pitching changes and trips to the mound, or requiring each pitcher to face multiple batters.
Speaking at the Sports Diversity & Inclusion Symposium on Wednesday, the new baseball commissioner said he doesn't see any need to expand the designated hitter to the National League. Manfred also expects teams and the players' association to discuss possible changes to September call-ups during collective bargaining for a contract that starts before the 2017 season.
Concerned the average time of nine-inning games climbed to 3 hours, 2 minutes in 2014, owners and players agreed to install clocks to time between-innings breaks and pitching changes, and to require hitters to keep at least one foot in the batter's box in many instances. The average has dropped to 2:56 this season.
More radical rules, such as a 20-second pitch clock, were used in the high minor leagues.
"You will see a continuing evolution of our rules in order to speed the game," Manfred said to the audience at Citi Field. "Things like visits to the mound, both catcher and manager visits. It's always been astounding to me exactly what wisdom is imparted in those visits, with all due respect to the great managers."
Court agrees with NCAA
A federal appeals court struck down a plan to pay college football and basketball players in a ruling that NCAA leaders believe supports their contention that the athletes are students and not professionals.
The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals agreed that the NCAA's use of college athletes' names, images and likenesses in video games and TV broadcasts violated antitrust laws, but vacated a judge's decision that would have allowed schools to make deferred cash payments to athletes of up to $5,000 per year.
"The difference between offering student-athletes education-related compensation and offering them cash sums untethered to educational expenses is not minor; it is a quantum leap," Judge Jay Bybee wrote. "Once that line is crossed, we see no basis for returning to a rule of amateurism and no defined stopping point."
Rose may be back for opener
Chicago Bulls coach Fred Hoiberg said Derrick Rose's surgery to repair his fractured left orbital bone went "as expected" and didn't rule out Rose's participation in the Oct. 27 season opener against the Cavaliers.
The Bulls estimated Rose will be able to resume basketball activities in two weeks. Previous NBA examples and medical experts said the range is from two to six weeks.
Beasley will play in China
Michael Beasley will play in China for a second consecutive year. Just as he did at the start of last season, the former Timberwolf reached an agreement to play in the China Basketball Association. As was the case last season, when he joined Miami in late February, Beasley will be eligible to return to the NBA for the conclusion of the season, after his schedule ends in China.
Nuggets sign former Wolf Miller
The Nuggets signed veteran forward Mike Miller to a one-year deal. The former Timberwolf played last season for the Cavaliers, where he saw action in 52 games and averaged 13.5 minutes. The 15-year veteran has also played for Memphis, Miami, Washington and Orlando.
around the horn
Swimming: Olympic and world champion Katie Ledecky earned a leading five nominations for the Golden Goggle Awards, which honor the year's top swimming performances. Missy Franklin, Ryan Lochte, Michael Phelps and open water swimmer Jordan Wilimovsky earned three nominations each.
NHL: Edmonton forward Jordan Eberle will miss four to six weeks because of a shoulder injury.