Manfred is undecided on using a pitch clock in the 2019 regular season.
MLB commissioner Rob Manfred said a pitch clock will be used in spring training this year, according to ESPN's Jeff Passan. There is a possibility for the pitch clock to extend into the regular season, although Manfred would reportedly like to work with the player's union before making a decision.
Manfred said he is not committing to a pitch clock in the regular season at this point, but he can unilaterally implement it. He said he wants to come to an agreement with the players. Using it in spring training does not necessarily mean MLB will do so in the regular season.— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) February 17, 2019
A 20-second pitch clock was introduced across Double A and Triple A in 2015, with an automatic ball used as a penalty for pitchers who did not start their delivery before the clock hit zero. Manfred didn't specify what penalty will be used in spring training.
Manfred has the power to unilaterally enforce a pitch clock for the regular season before opening day. He can also reduce the number of potential mound visits per team from six to five in a given game.
Spring training games will begin on Thursday when the Mariners face the Athletics. The two teams will open the regular season on March 20 at the Tokyo Dome, while the rest of the league begins on March 28.