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As baseball enters a new era, fans are about to witness the most significant alterations to MLB rules in decades. From a pitch timer and restrictions on extreme infield shifts to bigger bases, the game of baseball is changing in a big way. But don’t worry, MLB is using this week to demonstrate the new rules for the news media so that we can give you, the fan, a better idea of what to expect at the start of the season.

Let’s start with the basics. To create a crisper pace of play, there will be a 30-second timer between batters and then a 15-second timer between each pitch with the bases empty and a 20-second timer between each pitch with runners on base. The batter must be in the batter’s box and alert to the pitcher by the 8-second mark on the timer or else be charged with an automatic strike. The pitcher must go into his motion prior to the expiration of the timer or else be charged with an automatic ball. The pitcher is allotted two “disengagements” (a step-off or a pickoff attempt) without penalty.

But it’s not just the pitch timer that’s causing some changes. The defensive team must have a minimum of four players within the outer boundary of the infield, with at least two infielders completely on either side of second base, or else the penalty will be an automatic ball. This rule is aimed at showcasing the athleticism of middle infielders and restoring more traditional outcomes on balls in play.

So what does this all mean? It’s simple. Fans are going to get to experience the best athletes playing the game with the pace and rhythm that existed in the 1970s and 80s. This is going to produce a form of the sport that no one has ever seen before. Plus, the pitch timer reduced the average game time in the Minor Leagues last year by 25 minutes, and the limit on pickoff attempts led to a 26 percent increase in stolen-base attempts.

It’s going to take some getting used to for everybody, but with the help of MLB executives demonstrating the new rules this week, we can all be prepared for the start of the new season. Get ready for a new era of baseball, and get ready to witness the most significant alterations to MLB rules in decades!