Baseball is back with a different look.
The spring training games in the Cactus and Grapefruit Leagues have provided an introduction to the major rule changes coming to MLB this season, from the pitch clock to the shift restrictions and the bigger bases.
The pitch clock, which is certainly the most drastic change, has seen immediate success in shortening games. According to ESPN, the first weekend of games had an average time of two hours and 38 minutes -- down 23 minutes compared to 2022 spring training.
But the baseball being played now isn't exactly what we'll see come Opening Day.
How long are MLB spring training games?
Spring training games are nine innings.
Are there extra innings in MLB spring training?
Unlike the regular season, extra innings are not played in spring training. If a winner hasn't been determined after nine innings, the game ends in a tie.
But spring training could produce unique scenes such as the one that arose in Tuesday's Pirates-Orioles game. Pittsburgh and Baltimore played the bottom of the ninth inning even though the Pirates had already officially won the game, and they did so without any umpires.