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South Bend Cubs prepare for new minor league rules

There are a couple of rule changes for Minor League Baseball—and fans should know about them...
There are a couple of rule changes for Minor League Baseball—and fans should know about them before heading out to Four Winds Field.(WNDU)
Published: Apr. 6, 2022 at 12:38 AM EDT
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SOUTH BEND, Ind. (WNDU) - The South Bend Cubs are gearing up for another season that is set to begin on Friday night.

But the season will bring some big changes.

There are a couple of rule changes this time around for Minor League Baseball—and fans should know about them before heading out to Four Winds Field.

First off, things on the field will look slightly different as the size of the bases will increase by three inches (18 inches instead of 15 inches). It’s a move that could create more exciting opportunities for stolen bases.

Another new addition for the upcoming season is a pitch clock—giving pitchers a 17-second time limit to deliver the ball to home plate in an effort to cut down on total game time.

All in all, the hope is to make the game more enjoyable for the fans. And the team doesn’t seem to mind the tweaks either.

“I mean, I think it’s more for the guys that are super slow,” says pitcher Chris Clarke. “I’m not that slow. But we kind of need a pitch clock in baseball. So, I think it’s going to help out. Not only just for the players, but also the fans are going to enjoy it a little bit more.”

“They were putting the new bases out today,” says shortstop Ed Howard. “It’ll be a little different. But honestly, I think if you have bigger bases, it’ll make it a little closer. So, I think about stealing bases and things like that. It’ll be a little different but, just go out there and play.”

“It’ll probably take a couple of games to get ironed out because we had the same rules in the fall league when I managed, and it took about a couple games to iron out,” says manager Lance Rymel. “But that’s the great thing—I have that experience. I know what to do. I know what to look for, and I can tell these guys, so it won’t take that long.”

The South Bend Cubs will face the Quad Cities River Bandits at Four Winds Field on Friday at 7:05 p.m.

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