Throughout the season the CBS Sports MLB experts will bring you a weekly Batting Around roundtable breaking down pretty much anything. The latest news, a historical question, thoughts about the future of baseball, all sorts of stuff. Last week we debated the NL East race. This week we're going to tackle one of MLB's newest rules.


What are your thoughts on MLB banning the shift?

R.J. Anderson: I'm more indifferent than I expected I would be when Manfred first broached the possibility years and years ago. I'm generally not a fan of banning or limiting strategic components, like defensive positioning, but I've grown to feel that the impact the shift had on offensive production was overstated -- something that I think is validated when you look at the leaguewide BABIP on a year-to-year basis. Research conducted by Russell Carleton has echoed that sentiment, and has provided evidence that pitchers can be negatively impacted by the shift more than hitters. Maybe I'm wrong and doing away with the shift proves to be more pivotal than I expect, but my gut feeling is that it ends up being much ado about nothing.

Matt Snyder: I've already covered this at length, but yes, I love it. The biggest thing for me was to prevent teams from having more than three outfielders. It has long driven me crazy to see line drives to the outfield that should be hits end up in the glove of an infielder that is badly out of place, at least where we have long envisioned "out of place." I guess it's one of my "old man yells at clouds" moments, but the extreme shifting just drives me batty.