(CBS) Cubs manager Joe Maddon likes baseball the way it is and doesn't want to see a crucial element of the game change.
In the wake of news breaking over the weekend that MLB intends to adjust the strike zone in the future by moving the lower boundary from "the hollow beneath the kneecap" to the top of the hitter's knees, Maddon expressed his belief that it could have "unintended consequences."
"It's the unintended consequences you got to be careful with," Maddon said on the Spiegel and Goff Show on Tuesday. "I don't know exactly how that's going to play out by raising the strike zone.
"First of all, pitchers are taught not to throw up in the zone (or down the middle). So I don't know that you're going to necessarily convince pitchers that it's OK to do that. My point is if they still want to pitch down and the zone's up, you're going to see more balls (called) and potentially more base-runners that way too due to walks. There'd not necessarily be balls in play. It could increase the numbers -- possibly. Again, I don't know. There's so many things when you put different items out there like that. Who knows how that's going to impact everything around.
MLB's competition committee recently agreed on the motion to tweak the strike zone, ESPN.com reported, and the change could take effect as soon as the 2017 season. The move still needs to be approved by baseball's playing rules committee.
Maddon believes hitting struggles of today have more to do with defenses knowing where to shift to with more data than ever before available, as well as pitchers also having a wealth of information on where to attack hitters in the zone.
"I really don't like a lot of the changes," Maddon said. "I'm not into all the changes. I think eventually players will react and evolve true to the way the game's played right now. It's going to be very difficult to teach and train umpires all of a sudden to lift that zone and pitchers to throw the ball up and hitters to react differently.
"I don't know how it's all going to play."
Listen to Maddon's full interview with Spiegel and Goff below.
Joe Maddon on the Spiegel and Goff Show
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