The shortened 60-game schedule starts July 23rd, but with a few new rules. On the financial side of things, player salaries will be pro-rated for the shortened season. A player contracted to earn $1,000,000 with have that salary multiplied by (60/162) — dropping his 2020 earnings to about $370,000.
On the field, the first change you'll see is that the National League will be using the Designated Hitter this year. Major League Baseball claims this is a temporary change, but I'm skeptical.
The second change only affects extra inning games, where every half-inning after the 9th will start with a runner on second base. The traditionalist in me hates this rule, but I have to admit that it will have the desired effect: the average length of an extra-inning game will drop from 11.1 innings to 10.4 innings — with roughly 2/3rds of extra-inning games ending after just one extra frame.
The length of the average game dropped from 9.18 innings to 9.11 innings. This doesn't seem like much of a difference, but the rule change significantly reduces the number of games that go deep into extra innings. A team has about 15 extra-inning games in a typical 162-game season. Without this new rule, more than 25% of extra-inning games last 12 or more innings. With this rule, only 7% reach the 12th inning — and games of 14 or more innings are virtually unheard of (less than 0.03% of the total).
The 60-game schedule for this season has now been added to Baseball Mogul 2020. You can download a text version of the schedule here.
The newest patch includes this schedule and some additional features for the shortened season. For example, the Roster Rules now have a checkbox to prorate player salaries — as is being done for the current season. And the League Editor has an option to start each inning after the 9th with a runner on 2nd base (also a new rule this year).
To play the 60-Game season (which includes these rules changes) in Baseball Mogul 2020:
1. Start a New Game.
2. Click the "Custom" button.
3. Click "Load Database".
4. Choose "Database File" and click "PLAY".
5. Select "60-Game Season (2020)" and click "Open".
You can still play the full 2020 season (with the official 162-game schedule) by starting a new game and clicking "Modern".
In response to the overwhelming feedback to my blog post about the Thanos Snap, I've added a "Thanos Button" to Baseball Mogul 2020:
Clicking this button randomly disintegrates half of the players in the database. It also eliminates half of everyone on earth, with corresponding adjustments to the population level of each team's fan base.
I don't normally thank people publicly for detailed feedback, because doing so feels like a slight to the many contributors that I don't recognize. Nevertheless, I'd like to thank Damon Preston for sending me the following bug report and his league's saved game file — helping me find and fix some issues in the relief pitcher code.
Baseball Mogul tries to use pitchers according to their specified roles (e.g. "Short Relief").
In an 8th-inning save situation, the game should have chosen Tony Watson (the Setup Man). But my analysis of the saved game file showed that the code skipped Watson to get the platoon advantage, and it went all the way down to Jimenez because of a tiny difference in pitcher fatigue levels.
I was able to rewrite the relevant code and fix the above mistakes in Version 23.07. Thanks to everyone for the continued feedback. Baseball is a complex game, and it takes a village to create a realistic simulation of it.
Well, arguments have been made on both sides. But what we do know is that, financially, Major League Baseball would be fine. Eliminating 50% of all major league players would cause team payrolls to drop by 50% — but demand for tickets would only drop by about 30%. At least in the short term, Major League Baseball would actually be more profitable.