The Birmingham (Ala.) News has some exciting developments for those who wish to see the pace of play pick up in college baseball. The Southeastern Conference Tournament will experiment with a clock between pitches and between innings in 2010. The SEC will adopt clocks similar to those used in the early 1990s by the Missouri Valley Conference: 20 seconds between pitches, 90 seconds between innings. In addition, there will be no infield practice, cutting the time between games down to 30 minutes from 45-50 minutes. And the early-round games will start at 9:30 a.m. instead of 10.
The SEC projects the changes to save about two hours on days with four games. Last year, the first two days of the tournament ended at 1:54 a.m. and 1:09 a.m.
"It wasn’t just when the games ended. We weren’t hitting any of our published game times all day," SEC associate commissioner Charles Bloom told the News. "The clock also lends itself to a bigger issue, and that’s making college baseball more manageable to television."
Starting this season, ESPN holds the rights to all SEC tournament games.
We commend the SEC on taking this major step toward improving the pace of play, and we hope other conferences follow suit.
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