2023 MLB Opening Day: Who plays today? Times, schedule | How to watch on TV and online
The start of the 2023 MLB regular season is right around the corner, and here is a guide for today’s games schedule and where you can follow it.
This Thursday, Major League Baseball action is back. For the first time in history since the introduction of interleague play in 1997, all 30 MLB teams will play each other this season. The idea behind it is to introduce a unique, balanced schedule for 2023, with every team playing 52 divisional games (down from 76), 46 interleague games (up from 20), and 64 intraleague games (up from 44).
A new set of rules of play is meant to streamline the game, from the pitch clock to the shift limitations to bigger bases. The results have borne out in spring training, with games generally lasting about two and a half hours and the pace of play feeling significantly faster.
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The Houston Astros will look to defend their 2022 World Series title, but they’re coming in slightly different from last year. Justin Verlander has reunited with former Tigers teammate Max Scherzer in the Mets rotation. Jose Altuve will miss the season’s opening after fracturing his thumb after being hit by a pitch in the World Baseball Classic.
Today is also a historic day because it will be the first time since 1968 that all 30 teams are scheduled to play, indicating there will be 15 games on the schedule.
MLB Opening Day schedule and times
Here are the 15 games scheduled for MLB Opening Day on March 30, with their corresponding times:
How to watch the MLB Opening Day
T.V.: Most Opening Day games are going to be broadcast by regional sports networks, with MLB Network carrying a few games throughout the day
Streaming: Fubo, DirecTV
2023 MLB season new rules overview
MLB has instituted three new rules to accelerate the pace of games, increase offense, and add a layer of safety. As we mentioned, they were used throughout spring training and will also be effective during postseason play.
A timer will move games along and cut down on wasted time. It will be 30 seconds between batters, and pitchers must begin their motion 15 seconds after receiving the ball with empty bases and 20 seconds with runners on base. They will be charged with a ball if the clock expires. Also, with runners on base, pitchers will be limited to two pick-offs or rubber step-offs per plate appearance. The clock resets each time. Batters need to be in the box and ready for the pitch with 8 seconds left on the clock, or else be charged with a strike. Batters are allowed to step out once per appearance.
End of the over shift:
No more team meetings on one side of the playing field. Teams must have at least four players on the infield and at least two defenders on each side of second base. The thinking is this will increase the batting average on balls in play.
Bases are bigger:
First, second and third base are now 18 inches on each side, up from 15. The idea is the larger bases might cut down on collisions between fielders and runners, especially at first.