Pete Rose’s request for reinstatement to baseball is another issue preoccupying commissioner Rob Manfred this offseason.
BOCA RATON, Fla. — With Chase Utley’s nasty slide against Ruben Tejada in the NL Division Series still fresh on everyone’s minds, Major League Baseball plans to discuss possible rule changes this offseason.
That will begin at this week’s general managers’ meetings, continue through next week’s owners’ meetings and, ultimately, lead to further discussions with the MLB Players’ Association.
“We view this as a player safety issue and we want to make sure we’re in the right place without committing to whether there will be a change or not,” Commissioner Rob Manfred said.
Manfred joked that the process of instituting new rules can be “heavy” given the need for cooperation from the union.
“It’s a complicated process because not only are we dealing with it internally trying to make sure we know where our constituents are, but it’s obviously a mandatory topic that we have to address with the MLBPA as well,” said Manfred. “We kind of have an internal and external process at the same time.”
One issue that seems close to being resolved is Pete Rose’s demand for reinstatement to baseball.
“The end of the year is my deadline,” Manfred said. “I’m not telling you it’s going to happen on December 30 or whatever, but it will be done by the end of the year.”
A more complicated issue to resolve will be the installation of protective netting at all 30 stadiums, although the league continues to review fan safety issues across the league. The subject is on the agenda for next week’s owners’ meetings.
“If you look at stadiums, it becomes apparent that a simple uniform – for example, a net at the edge of the dugout – is not feasible given the variation in stadium design,” Manfred said. “It’s going to have to be a little more complicated than that if we move forward.”
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