The 2019 Atlantic League All-Stars will make baseball history when they step into the batter’s box next Wednesday for pitches called with the assistance of an automated ball-strike system (ABS).
One of the most anticipated rules initiatives resulting from the new partnership between Major League Baseball and the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball (ALPB), ABS will leverage modern technology to provide a consistent strike zone to pitchers and hitters. The home plate umpire will continue to perform all of his normal duties but will be assisted in ball-strike calling by ABS.
Atlantic League President Rick White said that after several months of testing, both parties are confident that the technology and umpires are ready to begin use of the system.
“The working relationship between MLB, ABS vendor TrackMan, the umpires, and our teams has been terrific,” said White. “After carefully installing, testing, and tweaking the system to make the transmission of the information to the umpire quick and reliable, we feel ABS is ready for prime time.”
Featuring players from each of the eight ALPB teams, the Atlantic League All-Star game returns to York, Pa., for the first time since 2011. The York Revolution, winners of three league titles, joined the league in 2007 and play in PeoplesBank Park in downtown York. First pitch is slated for 7:30 p.m.
The day of the All-Star Game will start with a wide variety of family-friendly activities in the Judgement Free Fun Zone presented by Planet Fitness on the Brooks Robinson Plaza, followed by the pre-game home run derby.
Legendary Baltimore Orioles Brooks Robinson and Andy Etchebarren (a former Revolution manager) will serve as honorary co-captains, all-time Revolution great Corey Thurman will help Revolution radio broadcaster Darrell Henry “call” the home run derby from the field, and the fan-favorite ZOOperstars! will make their only appearance at PeoplesBank Park this year during the game.
At the game’s conclusion, the Star-Blazing Spectacular presented by AAA Southern Pennsylvania, the largest fireworks display in ballpark history will launch from center field.