As Major League Baseball continues to adapt to the unprecedented circumstances of the 2020 season, it is considering a notable change to the present 60-man player pool system. Per Josh Norris of Baseball America, a proposal under consideration would add something like 15 more slots to each team’s alternate training site.
It doesn’t sound as if this evolution is a done deal, or even a firmly hammered out system under consideration. But developments have come far more rapidly than usual during this ad hoc, covid-addled campaign. If the league is to implement it, we’d presumably see things come together in rather short order.
As with the alternate site information sharing plan that is set to go into effect, this latest development reflects observations from the early functioning of a modified season and an effort to anticipate issues to come. First and foremost, as Norris explains, the current approach has left too few players around to participate in alternate site games. And teams would surely rather have more flexibility to get players in action, both to enhance development of younger players and to build out veteran depth.
There’s also an interesting potential trade deadline tie-in here, as with the enhanced scouting that would come from video and statistical sharing. Bigger player pools…