Over the past few weeks, Major League Baseball has been in a pickle. And almost every time they try to do or say something, they end up making the situation worse. Nevertheless, on the heels of the Astros sign stealing scandal, MLB is looking at cracking down on something that was technically already illegal.
As reported by the New York Post’s Joel Sherman, MLB is looking to enforce Rule 8.02 which concerns “foreign subtances” used by pitchers.
Chris Young, recently elevated by MLB to a senior VP to oversee on-field operations and umpire development, has been touring camps in Arizona and Florida to deliver the message that Rule 8.02 is going to be enforced this year, The Post has learned. That is the edict that deals with pitchers taking foreign substances to the mound and applying them to the ball.
A much bigger microscope is going to be put on MLB after their handling of what the Astros did and while this might show that they’re serious, I’m not sure MLB should be applauded for enforcing their own rules. While pitchers claim that some leniency is needed when they are pitching in cold and dry climates, it is still a rule and it can be enforced.
Personally, I get there’s extenuating circumstances and sometimes leniency is needed but it’s always been a pet peeve of mine that certain rules aren’t enforced. Because why have the rule in the rulebook when it’s not going to be enforced in the first place? Maybe I’m being overly dramatic or unreasonable because it’s technically no different than going five miles per hour faster than the speed limit but it invites a situation where fans can point at MLB for being inconsistent and can be angry when an umpire actually enforces the rule when plenty of other pitchers do the same thing. This might be harsh against pitchers but this seems to be an unintended consequence after everything that has happened.