The designated hitter Rule allows teams to employ a person to play in lieu for the pitching coach. Since the pitcher remains one of the nine defensive players the designated hitteror “DH” will not have to play defense.
This rule came into effect by the American League in 1973, however, pitchers were still allowed to hit during games in National League parks. The designated player was introduced as a rule by the National League as part of the collective bargaining agreement for 2022-26.
The DH should be picked prior to the game and the DH must play at least once -in the event that the team opposing alters pitchers prior to this time. The team that fails to choose the DH prior to the start of a game is not allowed to use the position of a DH throughout the game. Any player who plays in the game as the DH — whether as a pinch-hitter or pinch-runner — is the team’s DH lineup afterward.
If a player that is the DH is later utilized for defense, he is able to bat in the position in the same lineup. However, during the rest period of game the team is not able to utilize the position of a DH who bats the place for the player. The team also is barred from using an DH throughout the game in the event that the pitcher is moved from the mound into a defensive position, or if a person who pinch-hits another player before becoming the pitcher or the pitcher who is currently in the position pinch-hits or pinch-runs the DH.
The history of the designated hitter Rule
This rule of designated hitters was enacted by the AL in 1973. Before 2022, pitchers had to bat at every NL games as well as Interleague games where there was an NL team was designated as the home team. The universal designated hitter Rule was also implemented for a single season in 2020, as a part of the health and safety guidelines implemented during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The DH did not play during the World Series from 1973-75, after which it was employed in the two World Series teams during even-numbered seasons from ’76 to ’85. The practice of playing every game following regulations of the home team’s league started in 1986. World Series.