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Report: Baseball to change the expanded roster rules for next year

Sep 5, 2012, 11:33 AM EDT

Bruce Bochy Getty Images

I hate the expanded rosters in September. They can make for some ugly baseball — witness 11 pitchers and 25 total players being used in last night’s Giants-Diamondbacks game — and they can, however subtly, impact playoff races as teams in games involving contenders can do all manner of unorthodox crap, what with 15 extra bodies loitering around the dugout.

But that may soon be over, reports Scott Miller of CBS Sports.com:

Expanded late-season rosters have been a growing topic of discussion among members of Commissioner Bud Selig’s special committee for on-field issues. And there is increasing momentum to change the rules by next season, multiple industry sources have told CBSSports.com.

Teams would still be free to expand rosters during the final month of the season but would be subject to roster limitations on a nightly basis. Within this, clubs would have to designate which players are eligible before each game.

Miller says the idea would be to expand rosters to only 30 while requiring teams to designate 25 players as eligible each night.

This would (a) still allow teams to get look-sees at interesting minor leaguers; but (b) would not allow anyone to do what Bruce Bochy did last night and turn a September game into a spring training game.

Me likey. Me likey lots.

  1. franklb - Sep 5, 2012 at 11:39 AM

    Um, Craig – D’Backs, not ‘Stros. But otherwise, yeah. That Giants game took way, way too long, and extra innings had little to do with that. It was all about the pitching changes.

  2. Gamera the Brave - Sep 5, 2012 at 11:42 AM

    Well, for what it’s worth, you can see from the picture above that Bochy himself wasn’t happy about it…

  3. chill1184 - Sep 5, 2012 at 12:00 PM

    Why are we fixing something that isn’t broken?

    • anthonyverna - Sep 5, 2012 at 4:57 PM

      Mainly because it is broken.

  4. scatterbrian - Sep 5, 2012 at 12:03 PM

    A team could designate their one SP and 10 bullpen arms to a nightly 25-man roster and still pull Bochian shenanigans.

    • stex52 - Sep 5, 2012 at 12:59 PM

      That’s okay. They can do during the whole regular season if they want to. It just won’t be so wise. I think this is a good change.

  5. sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Sep 5, 2012 at 12:06 PM

    So Bud can act on this and implement the change for next year, despite the fact that I have never heard a serious complaint about this issue. Yet, Bud and his committees will require at least 10 more years of intensive study and written declarations from players, managers, owners, fans and the ball itself saying that they all really, really, really want expanded use of replay.

    • cur68 - Sep 5, 2012 at 12:12 PM

      There’s plenty of appetite for not paying for more ballplayers, see? Having all these warm bodies on the MLB roster costs more. Betcha they come up with some scheme to pay the non-designated guys less if they were minor leaguers prior to roster expansion?

      • rooney24 - Sep 5, 2012 at 4:25 PM

        The players union won’t let that slide. They will still be paying the players. If they didn’t want to pay more guys, they wouldn’t call up the extra guys right now.

      • natstowngreg - Sep 5, 2012 at 5:47 PM

        It would be like NHL rosters. (Also NFL and NBA, but I figured hockey would be easier for Beaver Men to inderstand :) .) A team has maybe 26-27 guys on the roster, of whom 23 dress for a game. But the extra players for a given game are still part of the roster, and get paid accordningly.

  6. delawarephilliesfan - Sep 5, 2012 at 12:12 PM

    Okay, I give up. How do you play a game with 14 non-pitchers between 2 teams?

    • temporarilyexiled - Sep 5, 2012 at 12:18 PM

      The Giants used 25 players, of which 11 were pitchers. The Diamondbacks used a mere 16. Now I wish Bochy had broken the record by using 12 pitchers, seeing as The Village Idiot is again working on change where it’s not needed, while doing his usual triple monkey pose about the stuff that matters.

  7. dwrek5 - Sep 5, 2012 at 12:40 PM

    Stole this idea, but why not have expanded rosters at the beginning of the season instead? Then have cut-downs at the end April. Then you can see if it will be worthwhile to carry some of these kids or if they need more seasoning in the minors.

    • scatterbrian - Sep 5, 2012 at 2:03 PM

      I thought of this once as well, but mainly to shorten Spring Training.

    • Joe Hansen - Sep 5, 2012 at 3:53 PM

      No one would ever do it because it would start players’ service time.

      • scatterbrian - Sep 5, 2012 at 9:19 PM

        An excellent point.

  8. Chris Fiorentino - Sep 5, 2012 at 12:49 PM

    It’s not surprising that a guy whose team choked away a 9 game wild card lead on September 1st last year would hate the expanded September rosters. Now I understand…it was the 40-man rosters that cost the Braves the Wild Card last year!!! LOL.

    For the dummies…

  9. stex52 - Sep 5, 2012 at 12:57 PM

    It’s a very sensible change. A 40 man game roster is absurd and allows the kind of silly overcoaching we saw last night. Give a coach some consequences to his actions when the bench runs out. I would say that it would still be okay to expand the full roster to 40. But just designate the 25 who can play every night.

  10. mf44srq - Sep 5, 2012 at 1:00 PM

    Tradition is why we have September call ups. Whether your team is in first looking for that extra pinch runner, or in last looking at the future, it’s always a great time of year. In short, shut the F%^& up about expanded rosters.

    • paperlions - Sep 5, 2012 at 1:17 PM

      Tradition is why we have racism and misogyny too. Tradition is a horrible basis for the defense or support of an idea.

      • Chris Fiorentino - Sep 5, 2012 at 2:50 PM

        paper, I think Tradition is a horrible basis for a racist or misogynistic idea, but it’s not ALWAYS a horrible basis.

        For example, my family “traditionally” gets together for Thanksgiving. Every year. If my brother-in-law decided that he wants to go to Vegas this year, I would say he is breaking tradition and he should get together with the rest of the family.

        In your world, his answer would be “Tradition is why we have Racism Chris, so I’m heading to Vegas baby!!!!”

        Basically, what I am saying is that you can’t make a blanket statement that everything rooted in tradition is wrong because of racism and misogyny. That’s ridiculous.

      • djpostl - Sep 5, 2012 at 6:26 PM

        I don’t care if its about racism or having to suffer through Turkey Day dinner with your in-laws, anything that has to be justified with “traditions says we do this..” is plain stupid.

        If you can’t go that extra step and say why you should be doing said thing then you need to re-think whether or not it needs to keep happening.

        For instance, I can say “hell, who doesn’t want to see my Grandmother tell Grandpa he’s ‘full of shit” 3456 times in one sitting?” in defense of Thanksgiving dinner.

        I can’t quite come up with a solid response to why half my family is a bunch of bigoted twits.

  11. scoutsaysweitersisabust - Sep 5, 2012 at 1:12 PM

    I would rather see a rule change preventing managers from bringing in a new pitcher for each batter. Seriously, if you have to bring in 5 pitchers to get 3 outs and give up no runs on two, you have a serious problem. How many times have we seen a pitcher come in, throw one pitch, get an out, then see the manager immediately hop out of the dugout to call in another guy. Really?

    In addition, I’d like to see batters be required to stay in the box during at bats. You may only step out of the box if you swing the bat. You don’t need to perform a 5 min ritual readjusting your cup, gloves, helmet, pants, shirt, and give an interview on your favorite ride at Disney after every pitch thrown.

  12. db105 - Sep 5, 2012 at 1:20 PM

    Expanded rosters in Sept is a joke. It’s like watching a spring training game but paying regular season prices. Worse yet is having teams that are out of the playoff race play minor leaguers vs teams battling for a playoff spot.

  13. Old Gator - Sep 5, 2012 at 3:26 PM

    Awww, this stuff is fun. In the words of Annie Savoy, quoting the immortal (though dead) William Blake from The Marriage of Heaven and Hell (which is as good a euphemism for real baseball versus designatedhitterball as I’ve ever heard), “The road of excess leads to the palace of wisdom.”

  14. 49ersgiants4life - Sep 5, 2012 at 3:34 PM

    Personally I think that the expanded rosters are great I love seeing young prospects prove themselves and who cares if the giants used 11 pitchers vogie only went 3 1/3 so most bullpen guys pitch an inning or so and then the lefty specialists don’t get your panties in a bunch over one game

  15. rooney24 - Sep 5, 2012 at 4:29 PM

    I wouldn’t mind if they capped it, but I wouldn’t want to see the daily limit at 25. Teams will be too scared to leave their star player off the list, so the young guys would get fewer chances. Personally, I would like to see the rosters at 26 or 27 anyway. With most teams carrying 12-13 pitchers regularly, you already get very few chances for young position players and make regular platoons at positions largely a thing of the past. I used to enjoy when teams had a strict platoon at one or two positions.

  16. jonirocit - Sep 5, 2012 at 4:41 PM

    Don’t care about tradition ..but leave it alone don’t complain about how long the game is on turn it off if u don’t want to see it

  17. sanzarq - Sep 5, 2012 at 5:04 PM

    Expanded rosters in September have been used as long as I’ve been a Baseball fan (since the early 60′s). There is NO VALID reason to change the rules. In fact, who’s complaining about it, besides you? Don’t side with Selig, fer Chris’sakes – you’ve said many times that he’s an idiot. I put up with a lot of your opinions,too, Craig, but this one is just STUPID!!

    • ptfu - Sep 5, 2012 at 5:57 PM

      Selig might be an idiot, but he might have accidentally stumbled across a good idea. You know, like the infinite-monkeys-eventually-typing-Hamlet or blind-squirrel-occasionally-finds-a-nut things.

      • sanzarq - Sep 5, 2012 at 8:03 PM

        I gave your comment serious consideration and then it hit me – NAH!

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