Snitker weighs in on pace-of-play debate

Braves manager among contingent resistant to rule changes

Snitker weighs in on pace-of-play debate

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- Braves manager Brian Snitker is among the contingent hesitant to make any drastic rule changes as Major League Baseball attempts to improve pace of play. But, as he gained his first experience as a big league manager last year he recognized the replay process can create some unwanted dead time.

A portion of this delay is created by the time it takes managers to decide whether or not to challenge a call that has been made on the field. But Snitker is also among those who would like a quicker decision from the umpires who review the challenges.

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"I remember last year it seemed like five seconds seems like two minutes when you're waiting to [hear] whether we should challenge or not," Snitker said. "Then when we'd hand it over [for review] it would be three and a half or four minutes. That I don't get. We're watching the same play on the replay board."

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Commissioner Rob Manfred expressed disappointment on Tuesday in response to the Major League Baseball Players Association's reluctance to authorize some rule changes that could improve pace of play for the upcoming season.

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Manfred has repeatedly made it clear his goal is to attempt to enhance the fan experience by making changes that would stimulate more frequent action during games. This is not simply an attempt to reduce the average game time.

"Once the umpire says 'Play ball', I think [the game] is fine," Snitker said. "Maybe guys do step out too much, and maybe something we need guys to get better at, but guys have been doing that their whole life and it's just part of what they do."

Odds and ends 

• Rain forced the Braves to complete Wednesday's workout within the two indoor batting cages located at ESPN's Wide World of Sports Complex.

"It probably came at a good time, just to give everybody kind of a blow," Snitker said. "It's Feb. 22. We could probably send everybody home for two weeks and bring them back and they'd be just fine."

• The Braves will announce their rotation for the first few Grapefruit League games on Thursday or Friday.

Mark Bowman has covered the Braves for since 2001. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.