MLB considering returning to 15-day disabled list, increasing option time for players sent to minors, report says

Major League Baseball has proposed going back to a 15-day disabled list and increasing the amount of time optioned players must spend in the minor leagues, according to The Associated Press. MLB switched the minimum time on the DL to 10 days from 15 days in 2016.

In the reported proposal, an optioned player would also have to spend at least 15 days in the minors, which would be an increase from the current length of 10 days. The limit could be waived to accommodate certain situations, however, such as a player being recalled to replace someone going on the DL, a drug or domestic violence suspension, or when a player goes on bereavement or paternity leave.

The new proposed changes are aimed at combating reliever manipulation, while also reviving offense.

According to the AP report, there were 702 separate DL placements in 2017 and another 737 in the 2018 campaign. Increased DL stints and minor-league option use made it easier for teams like the Tampa Bay Rays to use relievers as "openers" to start games.

The proposal is reportedly included in a larger plan given to the players' association, which is also considering a separate proposition from last offseason to institute pitch clocks. An agreement with the players' association is necessary for playing rules changes. The talks are ongoing could last into spring training.

MLB commissioner Rob Manfred was also reportedly gaining support to take action to limit defensive shifts earlier this offseason. 

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