JULY 31: The 7-inning doubleheader rule is now official. There’s no word yet on the proposed roster extension.
JULY 29, 2:04pm: These measures are union requests that the league is presently considering, per Joel Sherman of the New York Post (via Twitter).
1:45pm: It appears that the recent run of COVID-19 infections within the Marlins organization has prompted further contemplation of rules changes. The MLB Players’ Association has reached out to its members to gauge their sentiment regarding a few potential tweaks, per Britt Ghiroli of The Athletic (Twitter links).
Most notably, it appears the union has discussed with the league the possibility of keeping the 30-man active roster in effect all season long. The plan had been for it to ramp down to 26 players over the course of the campaign. But there’s now consideration of maintaining maximum flexibility for the entirety of the season.
The idea here, presumably, would be to make it easier for teams to manage workloads and deal with any coronavirus-related matters that arise. With more players to work with, for example, it’s easier to be proactive with isolating anyone who may have experienced possible transmission.
The other potential modification relates to doubleheaders. It’s possible the league could utilize a pair of seven-inning games or a regular nine-inning contest followed by a shorter, seven-inning affair. That would make it easier to squeeze in twin bills, as may well be needed to accommodate the scheduling modifications that have already proven necessary.
In both cases, the matters appear only to be under consideration at this time. Ghiroli cautions that “no firm decisions” have been reached just yet.