Rob Manfred is perhaps the most embattled commissioner in all of American professional sports, and his recent critical comments about fans are not likely to garner him more support among them.
The MLB commissioner recently took part in an interview with Evan Drellich of The Athletic during which he colorfully condemned fan reaction to rule changes instituted during his five-year tenure.
“The tiebreak rule. I’m not saying that we’re going to stay with it, I really am not. We went to it as part of the COVID protocols,” Manfred said. ” … But if you look at it when prior to the pandemic people talked about it: Oh my God, it was like a crime. It was like you were committing a crime against humanity. Now people have seen it in action and there’s lots of people saying, ‘You know what, this is actually OK.’
“The catcher-collision rule, that was going to be the end of humanity. Turns out it was a good thing. The change on the rule at second base, same thing. The four-pitch intentional walk, nobody even thinks about it anymore.”
Manfred went on to explain why he believes fans are often opposed to changes made to the game.