So, Willson Contreras Isn’t a Fan of the New Mound Visit Rules (UPDATES: Re the Penalty)

When the new pace-of-play rules were announced yesterday by MLB, the headline move was not including the much-discussed pitch clock. A limitation on mound visits, however, has long been a slightly more popular change, and it was included without dispute.

That said, there’s always a difference between agreeing on the rough contours of a rule, and then actually implementing the specifics. Whatever the specifics are for this new rule, Joe Maddon says the Cubs will deal with it. I’m sure they will.

At first blanch, though, Willson Contreras isn’t quite as ready to accept the limitation on mound visits:

Setting the defiant point aside, Contreras actually underscores here a significant and obvious problem with the mound visit rule as announced yesterday: how exactly does MLB plan to stop a 7th mound visit? Fines, as Contreras points out, aren’t going to do the trick. An umpire saying, “Hey, you there! Stop that walking! I see you! I know you can hear me! OK, well keep it short! Yes, that’s right, wrap it up! This doesn’t count as a visit because I say it doesn’t count! Please come back here quickly!”, isn’t gonna do squat in the heat of the moment.

MLB is going to need to clearly elucidate for catchers, pitchers, and other position players – their “visits” count now, too – exactly what the price is going to be if they make that illegal 7th visit.

Ejections will probably be threatened, but if it’s up to me, and if MLB really wants to make players respect this rule? It’s pretty simple: upon that 7th visit – just like a second manager visit in an inning – the pitcher has to come out. No chance a catcher is risking getting his pitcher pulled early in that situation. That way, the ump actually has some teeth when he says, “Don’t do it, buddy!” as the catcher starts to stroll to the mound.

UPDATE: Hey, MLB just out there stealing my ideas taking my suggestions:

UPDATE 2: I’ll go with the Commissioner, but it would be nice if MLB’s officials were on the same page:

Resuming original post.

That said … I still wouldn’t want to be the guy trying to stop Willson Contreras from doing something he’s set his mind on doing. If he’s gonna go see his pitcher, he’s probably gonna go see his pitcher.

(Photo by David Banks/Getty Images)

written by

Brett Taylor is the Lead Cubs Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at @BleacherNation and on LinkedIn here. Brett is also the founder of Bleacher Nation, which opened up shop in 2008 as an independent blog about the Chicago Cubs. Later growing to incorporate coverage of other Chicago sports, Bleacher Nation is now one of the largest regional sports blogs on the web.

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