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There is some concern out there that, because Rob Manfred seems intent on ruining the game of baseball as you know it, seven-inning games are going to eventually be the norm instead of what allows for regularly scheduled doubleheaders while MLB navigates a pandemic. With the modified extra innings rules, the minor leagues being used as a laboratory for pace of play and even more extra innings quirks and so on, it’s no wonder people feel like this about Manfred and his plans. Worry not, though: we probably won’t lose nine-inning games, because it would make the gamblers unhappy.
That’s right! The gamblers. Calling the intrusion of gambling on Major League Baseball “creeping” does not do what’s happening enough hasty justice—it’s been less subtle than that— but it’s still fitting since gambling’s influence is not becoming all-encompassing all at once. It is there, obvious to anyone who has seen the ways in which it has been introduced into even league broadcasts, but now we also have Manfred bringing it up in an interview with Sportico.