If no agreement is reached, however, commissioner Rob Manfred has the ability to unilaterally implement changes he discussed with the MLBPA last season.
As part of a January 14 proposal to the players' union on pace of play, baseball suggested a rule requiring pitchers to face a minimum of three batters, sources told The Athletic.
Among the proposed changes, the union requested a universal designated hitter be implemented ahead of the 2019 season, sources told Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic.
Pitchers like Madison Bumgarner (left) and Jeff Samardzija can keep raking in 2019.
Despite the name change, the rules of the DL will remain the same, the report said.
Amid rising tensions between Major League Baseball and the MLB Player's Association, the two sides have been meeting about some major rule changes that could fundamentally alter many aspects of baseball as we know it.
Conversations regarding roster size and roster construction are reportedly still on the table. Players responded February 1 with a broader plan, renewing their push for the DH in all games, an earlier trade deadline aimed at discouraging teams with losing records from trading stars, increasing service time for top young stars called up early in the season and rewarding and penalizing teams in the draft based on their records.
"Repeated pitching changes obviously take a lot of time", he said. "I think that there are pieces of their response on the on-field proposal that were very encouraging".
The prevailing feeling remains that a universal designated hitter will become a reality eventually.
Last offseason, negotiations were hampered by player anger over the slow free-agent market. A DH in both leagues could be considered an economic issue by management, one more ripe for discussion in the next labor contract.
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