Baseball moving 2nd base

Plus robot umps

I can only read a couple paragraphs of the article, but I do wonder what is the purpose of moving the bag.

I’m glad I won’t be around when robots replace the players.

Move 2nd inward to lineup with 1st and 3rd

Cliff notes version

In the beginning, the baseline ran through the center of 1st and 3rd, that was changed in the late 19 century to make it easier to identify a foul ball, but 2nd wasn’t moved and the imaginary baseline runs through the middle of 2nd. This will align it properly where the baseline runs along the edges of the base

Your Cliff notes version is essentially correct. It will also move 2B about 15 inches closer to 1B and 3B (spoiler: the distance between the bases is not and has never been 90 feet).

Could you imagine Ricky Henderson or Vince Coleman or one of the older base stealers having the base about 15 inches closer? How many more steals would that have added over a carer?

Today I learned something completely new to me. I’d never given it a thought.

So where are the measuring points between home & first? The back point of home plate to the front edge of first? The right edge of home to the back, front, middle of the first base bag?

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Ask @neastarkie and ye shall receive.
I had no clue so I googled it cause I couldn’t stop wondering

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Math has never been my strong suit, but I don’t think moving 2nd toward the mound so that the baselines intersect at the back corner of the back rather than the center will move 2nd 15 inches closer to either first or third. I don’t know the dimensions of the bag, but I think it’s about 15" x 15". Moving the base inward by about 10" won’t change the distances to 1st & 3rd much at all.

Somebody who knows math better than me can calculate it, but I’d guess it’s no more than 3-4 inches closer to the other bases. It’s a slight shortening of the base path, but also shortens the distance of the throw from home to 2nd by about 10"

I just read the article & it says it moves the bag closer to 1st & 3rd by 13.5 inches. Somebody help me figure why moving the bag to where the baselines intersect at the back corner of 2nd base has that kind of impact on the distances from 1st & 3rd.

The linked article goes through the math. I didn’t go back and plow through it, but as I recall, 2B is moving both closer to 3B/1B and to home plate. That dual move results in getting 15 inches closer, which is essentially the width of the base itself.

Yeah. I’m plowing through the rest of the article now. Still don’t see how the impact is that large, but I never was a math whiz.

Well, it turns out it isn’t some complex math formula I don’t understand. It’s that they’re increasing the size of the bag from 15" square to 18" square. That will certainly benefit the base runner. I don’t think I like that change.

Wouldn’t the throw from the catcher also be shorter? A thrown ball travels faster than the runner can run.


First base to second base — Measure from the back corner of first base to the exact middle of second base . Second base to third base — Measure from the exact middle of second base to the back corner of third base. Third base to home plate — Measure from the back corner of third base to the back of home plate. ( off of the internet)

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It’s closer for the catcher’s throw too. I doubt you see a lot more stolen bases.

No doubt it will make it a closer throw for the catcher, too. And on force plays the increase in the size of the bag will benefit the fielders. However, on steals I think there’d be a advantage to the runner with the increased size of the bag. I’m not sure the advantage would be enough to mean anything but a runner reaching out with his hand has a few inches less to reach. Personally, I’d rather see the bag stay at a 15" square, but it makes some sense to bring the bag in to where the back corner is the intersect point of the base lines. (Maybe that makes sense to me because until yesterday, that’s where I thought it already was.)

Agreed, I doubt it’s an advantage that will mean hardly one thing. the safety of having a bigger bag is the main deal here. Everything else is a wash.

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