Major League Baseball is proposing the return of seven-inning doubleheaders and starting each extra inning with a runner on second for the 2021 season due to the worsening coronavirus pandemic, sources told Bob Nightengale of USA Today.
The rules were originally introduced for the 60-game 2020 campaign to shorten the length of contests and better ensure player safety given the added fatigue of a compressed season.
The National League also introduced the designated hitter for the first time in its history to help with wear and tear on pitchers. However, it seems that rule won't continue into 2021, with the league office sending out a memo earlier in the winter telling clubs to prepare as if the universal DH won't be in effect.
News of the league wanting to revisit rules prior to the season comes amid the amended 2020-21 NBA campaign. The NBA has been forced to postpone multiple games over the past week.
MLB currently expects to return to a 162-game schedule.