Dodgers News: Vin Scully Believes Extra-Innings Rule Can Be Exciting

Originally published by DodgerBlue.com

The 2020 Major League Baseball season is going to be a unique one that is limited to 60 regular-season games, and with that comes some unusual rules.

Among them is a change to extra innings as from the 10th inning on, a runner will be placed on second base with nobody out in effort to conserve pitching staffs. While the new rule will present added challenges for relievers, it could add to the excitement of the game while also shortening the length and avoiding 15-inning games or longer.

One person who is in favor of the new rule is Dodgers legendary broadcaster. He recently discussed a similar format from the 1960s and how much excitement came from it, via Bill Shaikin of the L.A. Times:

Scully told the story of Ralph Edwards, the legendary host of the classic American shows “Truth or Consequences” and “This Is Your Life.” In the 1960s, Scully said, Edwards invited him to join a broadcast in which major leaguers simulated three versions of an extra inning. The first version was played under normal rules.

“The second inning, there were runners at first and second and one out, for both sides, when the inning started,” Scully said. “And then, the third inning, it was bases loaded and nobody out, for each team. And it was really exciting. Each team had a golden opportunity to win, right then and there. You didn’t have any buildup.

“I understand Ralph showed the tape to Major League Baseball, and of course they turned it down in a hurry. But, when I saw they’re going to have a runner on second base in the 10th inning, I thought, ‘Oh my gosh, Ralph Edwards is alive and well.’ ”

There have been plenty of rule changes throughout the years that fans weren’t in favor of that ended up being good for the game, so maybe fans should listen to Scully and give it a chance before making judgment.

Jansen not in favor of new extra innings rule

While Scully believes runners on base in extra innings will bring excitement to the game, Dodgers closer Kenley Jansen is not in favor of it.

Not only does it bring added pressure on relievers, but it also could impact with their statistics, which is important for someone like Jansen who could potentially make the Hall of Fame one day.

Plus, it’s no secret Jansen has struggled with runners on base throughout his career. In 2019, he balked a handful of runners from second to third base so he didn’t have to deal with them, although he obviously won’t have that luxury this season.

The Dodgers have practiced innings with a runner on second base in their intrasquad scrimmages, so they should be as prepared as anyone when the season rolls around.

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