CHICAGO -- Major League Baseball is having conversations with the players' association over possible rule changes designed to speed the pace of play, and Commissioner Rob Manfred said Thursday he hopes to reach an agreement instead of implementing any measures unilaterally. Manfred also said the Bruce Sherman-led ownership group trying to purchase the Miami Marlins has presented the league with a financial structure that would work for finalizing the deal, and he expressed confidence that a major league franchise can be successful in the market. The average time of a nine-inning game is a record 3 hours, 5 minutes this season, up from 3 hours last year and 2:56 in 2015, Manfred's first season as commissioner.
SAN FRANCISCO — Before each game, Phillies manager Pete Mackanin and his coaching staff decide who will take the lineup card to home plate. If the Phillies win that game, the same person takes the lineup card out the next day to see if he can keep the ball rolling. The Phillies entered Thursday night's game against the San Francisco Giants having lost four in a row. Mackanin needed someone to break the skid. At first, there were no volunteers. Then it dawned on hitting coach Matt Stairs: It was Aaron Nola's turn to pitch. "I'll take it!" Stairs offered. Who wouldn't want to hitch their wagon to Nola the way the right-hander had pitched lately? In his previous 10 starts, he'd delivered at least
It's Friday night lights for most MLB teams, with the exception of a 2:20 p.m. start time for the Blue Jays and Cubs. Other than the top two aces in our rankings, the slate of games for tonight has a wide range of pitchers who could score a ton of points