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.
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.