Major League Baseball action is back this Thursday. For the first time in history since the inception of the Interleague in 1997, all 30 MLB teams are playing will play against each other this season. The idea is to introduce a unique, balanced schedule for 2023, with each team playing 52 division games (out of 76), 46 interleague games (out of 20), and 64 intraleague games (out of 44).
A new set of game rules is designed to streamline the game, from which pitch clock for the Move Constraints to larger bases. The results have been confirmed in spring training, with games generally lasting around two and a half hours and the pace of play feeling significantly quicker.
The Houston Astros will be looking to defend their 2022 World Series title, but they’re coming off a little differently than last year. Justin Verlander has reunited with the former Tigers teammate Max Scherzer in the Mets rotation. Jose Altuve will miss the season opener after breaking his thumb after being hit by a pitch in the World Baseball Classic.
Today is also a historic day because it will be the first time since 1968 that all 30 teams are scheduled to play, indicating 15 games are on the schedule.
MLB Opening Day schedule and times
Here are the 15 games scheduled for MLB Opening Day on March 30 and their times:
Here’s how to watch opening day
TV: Most opening day games will be broadcast by regional sports channels MLB Network carry a few games throughout the day
Stream: Fubo, DirectTV
Overview of the new rules for the 2023 MLB season
introduced MLB three new rules to speed up the pace of games, increase offense and add a layer of security. As mentioned, they have been used throughout spring training and will be effective during postseason play as well.
A timer speeds up the games and cuts down on wasting time. It will be 30 seconds between batters and pitchers must begin their movement 15 seconds after receiving the ball with empty bases and 20 seconds with runners on base. You will be hit with a ball when the clock runs out. Also, pitchers with runners on base are limited to two pickoffs or rubber stepoffs per plate appearance. The clock is reset each time. Batters must be in the box and ready to pitch with 8 seconds left on the clock or they will be charged with a strike. Batters are allowed to fold once per performance.
End of overshift:
No longer team meetings on one side of the field. Teams must have at least four players in infield and at least two defenders on each side of second base. The thinking is that will increase the batting average of the balls in the game.
Bases are larger:
First, second and third base are now 18 inches on each side, out of 15. The idea is that the larger bases might reduce collisions between fielders and runners, especially early on.