I was watching baseball Sunday, mainly because rain and storms chased us inside.

The common theme throughout the two broadcasts I watched could be summarized by the phrase that starts “after the league bans shifting next season.”

Major League Baseball has all but committed to changing the rules of baseball so that teams can’t shift their players around based on the trends each batter has shown in their batting histories (also known as their spray pattern).

They won’t say what those changes might be, but it’s pretty clear that they will at-least make the defensive team keep two infielders on each side of second base.

Their reasoning is that scoring, batting averages and base runners-per-nine-innings are all down at the big league level. That translates to less action, and baseball is a sport with a lot of downtime already.

So baseball is going to mandate how teams position their players defensively.

Question: Isn’t it the defense’s sole purpose to get the other team out three times per inning without being scored on?

It is.

Now, teams aren’t playing an extra defender on the field—only the nine they are allowed.

Teams aren’t moving the pitching mounds forward.

They aren’t throwing a weighted ball or a Wiffle Ball to the plate for the batter to swing at. And now, they aren’t allowed to use any of the (wink-wink, nod-nod) “substances” to help pitchers better control their pitches.

What teams are doing is keeping track of where a batter tends to hit the ball, and then putting a fielder in that place.

How absolutely outrageous of them to participate is such a despicable display of unsporting behavior! (sarcasm alert!)

It’s called strategy, and every sport uses it.

Imagine a football team being told “you can only have five defensive players cross the line of scrimmage after the ball is snapped so the quarterback has more time to pass the ball (no more blitzing).” What if a defense could only put a maximum of five defensive linemen on the field for a short-yardage play down by the goal line or on fourth-and-one? What if you could only have one defensive back in each section of the field—one inside the hash marks and one each on the outsides?

Imagine a basketball team trying to play defense under the stipulation that only one player on defense is allowed to be in the lane.

Imagine a hockey team being told “your goalie has to stay standing the whole game or they get a penalty.”

What if a volleyball team was told only one player could block a spike attempt?

That would be insane, right?

That’s exactly what baseball is planning to do.

They are going to require the team in the field to have two infielders on either side of second base. They haven’t said that, but that’s what is going to happen.

Where does it end? What if scoring doesn’t increase?

Here are the next logical steps.

How about we outlaw double plays, saying a team can only make one out per batter?

How about we say teams can no longer bring the infield in to cut down runners at the plate?

Let’s call it an illegal pitch of the pitcher throws something other than a fastball on 2-0 or 3-1 and automatically make it “ball.”

Heck, bringing in an outfielder to act as a fifth infielder in a late-game situation should result in fines and suspensions.

Or, we could just tell the hitters to quit swinging to hit home runs on every pitch and adjust to what the defense is giving you like every other sport does.

Changing the rules to no longer allow defenses to put players where they want is enabling the bad behavior of batters, and it’s lazy.

You want to make teams stop shifting players on defense? Bunt. Hit little rollers through the vacant side of the infield. Anything!

Ending the shift is dumb and it makes no sense at all.

If Rob Manfred knew anything about baseball, he’d know I am right.

But he only knows money and what people tell him about baseball, and that’s how you get where we are going to be, moving forward.