The season is just a week away, and given the shortened Spring Training resulting from the offseason lockout, MLB and MLBPA have come to agreement on a series of roster changes, and one rule “change” for the upcoming season.
MLB and the MLBPA jointly announced these rule changes for this season. pic.twitter.com/yYOkO2BCHF— Fabian Ardaya (@FabianArdaya) March 31, 2022
All the roster rules basically give teams some flexibility through May 1.
- 28-man roster limit through May 1, including 29 for doubleheaders.
- The 13-pitcher roster limit comes into play on May 2; teams will not be limited to 13 pitchers until that date.
- Pitchers will be eligible for placement on a 10-day Injured List through May 1. After that, they will have to be shelved for 15 days, while the 10-day IL will remain an option for position players. The same also applies to option periods, which will bar recall of an optioned pitchers (unless there’s an injury) for 10 days through May 1, and 15 days thereafter. Position players will remain eligible for recall sooner.
- Options prior to May 2 won’t count against the new five-options-in-a-season-before-forced-waivers limit.
The most noticeable change, though, is not about roster limits, but is instead the maintaining of the despicable “extra innings start with a runner on second” rule. The rule was initially supposed to go away after the 2021 season, but is now being foisted upon us once again. Maybe in 2023...
The last rule change applies mostly-or-entirely to Shohei Ohtani, and is a procedural amendment to allow Ohtani, or another starter who is hitting for themselves, to remain in the game as the DH after their pitching assignment ends.