New Rule Changes and Exciting Matchups Kick Off the 2023 MLB Season on Opening Day

The 2023 Major League Baseball (MLB) season has officially kicked off with all 30 teams in action on Opening Day.[0] This year's season features a host of rule changes aimed at making games shorter and more action-packed.[0] Among the tweaks are bigger bases, the banning of the defensive shift on the infield, and a pitch clock to speed up games. Pitchers will now have 15 seconds to throw a pitch with the bases empty and 20 seconds with a runner on base, while batters must be ready to hit with eight seconds left on the clock. Violating these rules earns a ball for the pitcher, and the clock is set to 20 seconds when a runner is on base. Teams now also have a limit of two disengagements from the pitching rubber per plate appearance when attempting a pickoff.[0]

The new season features 15 games on Opening Day, with all 30 teams playing and 30 of the best pitchers across the majors taking the mound, including eight Cy Young Award winners and 21 All-Stars.[0] At 1:05 p.m., the initial games of the day commence.[0] ET, and one of them features Gerrit Cole taking the mound against Logan Webb and the San Francisco Giants.[0] The Yankees are among the World Series favorites, and Cole pitching at a Cy Young level is a big reason for that.[0]

In addition to the rule changes, the MLB has introduced new larger bases to improve player safety and to encourage more stolen-base attempts. The bases are now 18-square inches, up from 15-square inches, and home plate is now three inches closer to first and third base, while the corner bases are now 4 1/2 inches closer to second base.[0] The hope is that these changes will reduce collisions and make the game more exciting for fans.

The length of a baseball game has been steadily increasing since the 1970s, with the average nine-inning game lasting three hours and seven minutes last season. This longer game time has resulted in nearly four minutes of downtime between plays, causing a drop in attendance and TV viewership.[0] However, there is optimism that the average nine-inning game will settle somewhere between 2 hours, 40 minutes and 2:45.

Overall, the 2023 MLB season promises to be an exciting one for fans, with new rules and changes aimed at making games faster and more action-packed. With all 30 teams in action on Opening Day, fans can look forward to a thrilling season of baseball.

0. “2023 MLB Opening Day scores: Live updates as Astros open title defense; Mets, Yankees among winners” CBS Sports, 30 Mar. 2023,

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