Cubs' Kris Bryant open to MLB rule changes, offers fun ideas

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Tim Stebbins
·2 min read
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Kris Bryant open to MLB rule changes, offers fun ideas originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago

It's no secret the number of balls in play has gone down in MLB in the last several years. So, what does MLB need to do to inject more offense into the game?

Cubs third baseman Kris Bryant has a few fun ideas.

"I think they should move to the mound back to like 75 feet and they should throw underhand," Bryant joked before Monday's game in Atlanta. "That'd be fun."

Bryant's ideas were offered in jest, and he added he hasn't talked to former Cubs president Theo Epstein, now an MLB consultant working to find solutions to combat the game's lack of action.

However, the Cubs third baseman is at least open to potential changes to combat the advantage pitchers have over hitters in the game today.

"Sometimes you go up there and you're just pulling out your lightsaber and you're just trying to hit anything that comes your way," he said.

"I enjoy some of the talks of the changes when it comes to what we're trying to do more offense in the game," Bryant added. "I think there needs to be some changes because it's crazy.

"It's absolutely insane what some of these pitchers are able to do."

In 2019, MLB's last full 162-game season, hitters struck out 784 more times than they tallied hits. 

MLB has made radical changes to try and add offense in the past. After 1968, they lowered the mound from 15 to 10 inches. In 1973, they added the DH to the American League.

The league is experimenting a couple of rule changes down in the Atlantic League later this summer. They won't be moving the mound back 15 feet, but they will move it back a foot, to 61 feet, six inches.

MLB has experimented in the Atlantic League in the past, including starting extra innings with a runner on second base in 2019. They brought that rule to the big leagues during the shortened 2020 season and reimplemented it this season. 

Bryant called that rule, along with doubleheaders being seven innings, "great" and said the extra innings rule specifically adds excitement to the game.

Whether MLB needs to make any changes, Bryant appreciates the conversation happening.

"I don't know what the changes are," he said. "But, whatever it is, it's just cool to be talking about it."

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