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MLB Changes Lineup Submission Process to Prevent Bettors from Being ‘Tipped’ Info

MLB Changes Lineup Submission Process to Prevent Bettors from Being ‘Tipped’ Info article feature image

Kevin Sousa-USA TODAY Sports.

  • Major League Baseball teams will have to send their finalized lineups directly to the Commissioner's Office before disseminating them to the players and media.
  • The change in procedure is an effort "to reduce the risk of confidential information being 'tipped' [to bettors]," according to a statement from the league.

Major League Baseball is mandating that managers send their lineup cards into the Commissioner’s Office before releasing them in the clubhouse to reporters and players prior to games.

The move comes as the league wants to ensure that information passed around the clubhouse and the stadium doesn’t provide an edge to gamblers.

“We are updating a number of our procedures to reduce integrity risks associated with the expansion of sports betting in light of the Supreme Court’s ruling last May,” Major League Baseball said in a statement provided to The Action Network on Wednesday. “One new procedure is that we now ask clubs to submit starting lineups in a uniform fashion in order to reduce the risk of confidential information being ‘tipped.’ This approach mirrors those of international sports leagues in more developed betting markets.”

Here’s how the process will work:

The manager will submit the lineup card directly to the league. (This usually occurs 2-3 hours before a game.)

As it stands now, sources say that the information will then be sent to data providers like SportsRadar, who will put it out to the public and all the sportsbooks at the same time.

Managers can release the lineups in the stadium as soon as baseball confirms they have been processed, or 15 minutes after a manager submits the lineup — whichever comes sooner.

This will create much more structure around the release of lineups, which had been a scattered process, depending on the day and the team, according to The Action Network’s Justin Phan. In the past, the first look at a team’s finalized lineup wouldn’t always come from a club official or a credible journalist.

Sources say that operators who pay for baseball’s official data, like MGM, didn’t negotiate for this change in procedure, but lineups will become part of the official feed provided to the league’s partners.

Sources said the exact flow of how it will all operate is still being worked out.

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