Which Blue Jays will benefit most from each of MLB's new rules in 2023?

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You’ve probably heard that the ol’ ballgame is set to change in a significant way this upcoming season, as long talked about rule changes finally take effect in MLB. The thing we’re all eager to know, however, is how baseball’s new rules will impact the Blue Jays, and, more importantly, which players will be most positively affected.

Last week, we at Jays Journal took an in-depth look at which Blue Jays should most benefit from the new shift ban. If you haven’t already, I would recommend checking it out here.

Below we’ll look at the other major rule changes for 2023, then break down which Jays can be expected to cash in most.

*all stats from Baseball Savant

New Rule: Shift Ban

First, a refresher. No longer will teams be able to stack one side of the infield with defenders or use four outfielder alignments. Instead, teams must have two infielders on either side of second base on every pitch.

Who will this impact?

Look for players who pull the ball a lot and are shifted heavily, particularly those who pull the ball on the ground – the idea being that they’re constantly hitting the ball into the shift and making outs.

  • Daulton Varsho

Did you know that Daulton Varsho pulled the ball more than any qualified hitter in baseball in 2022? More than that, he was outside the top 100 qualified batters in Hard Hit Percentage, meaning much of the time he was pulling the ball, it was soft contact right into the shift. How many of those worm killers and thousand hoppers will become seeing-eye singles in 2023?

  • George Springer

George Springer might not immediately come to mind as a guy impacted by the shift, but he actually pulled the ball almost as much as Varsho in 2022 (11th among qualified batters) and was shifted even more (59.5%-48.2%). If more hits start rolling through a shiftless infield in 2023, well, fun fact: Springer's BABIP was .285 in 2022; the last time it was above .300 – when it was .305 in 2019 – he hit .292 with a .974 OPS in 122 games.

Learn more about what this means and check out the full list of Jays players most impacted by the shift ban here.