Union chief hopeful collision rules can be changed for this season
With spring training well underway and the regular season opener in Australia just a month away, new players union chief Tony Clark said there is still hope to approve and implement a rule change regarding home plate collisions.
"We've made progress,'' Clark said Friday after starting his spring tour by meeting with the Rays. "We are very hopeful that sooner rather than later that progress will lead to something getting done and we can move forward.''
On other topics of broad interest, Clark said:
* He was confident major-leaguers would be fine with having an openly gay teammate under the premise of welcoming anyone who helps them win.
* A major concern in implementing the expanded replay system is to make sure there will be an opportunity to make changes if needed during the season.
* There at least "will be dialogue" about the impact on free agency of the new draft pick compensation system, and further talk about drug policy changes.
* In his first year since succeeding the late Michael Weiner, Clark, a former player, expects to be tested by the owners and others: "They're going to find out if I can hit the fastball."