Naturally if a game goes to extra innings, it will be longer. There will be even more lollygagging! So the impulse to get the whole shebang over with makes sense. Starting runners on second, though, does not significantly help this: Both teams have an equal opportunity to score (probably through an actually legitimately boring formula of bunt + sacrifice fly). Sarcastic alternatives have been suggested: Why not just do a homerun derby in extra innings, a kind of baseball version of penalty shootouts? Better yet, Span suggested from the 10th inning on, “all fielders have to hop around in sacks.”
It’s funny, but it also hits at an important point: Starting a runner on second is in many ways an equally awkward implementation to the sport of baseball. In an analysis of the new rule and how it will officially be registered, Emma Baccellieri points out for Deadspin that it doesn’t even fit “into baseball’s most fundamental structures — the rulebook, the scorecard.”
This new rule is an assault on everything that makes baseball baseball. And remember, dead time is the affliction, not extra innings.