MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred addresses Pete Rose, A-Rod more burning questions

What should baseball fans expect from incoming MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred as he transitions into the role? MLB Network Radio sat down with Bud Selig’s successor earlier this week.

Will Pete Rose ever be eligible for induction into the Hall of Fame?

That’s Pete’s call. He’s got a right to apply for reinstatement, it’s allowed under our rules, and if he wants to do that, he can do it.

What’s the deal with the milestone clause in Alex Rodriguez‘s contract?

The deal was written in a way as sort of a marketing bonus that was allowable, at least arguably under the rules, to avoid the rules [that prohibit bonuses tied to home run totals], but beyond that, I just don’t want to get into it, because there may be a dispute.

Will there eventually be an international rookie draft?

We have proposed in a number of rounds of bargaining a worldwide draft. … I think at some point, the equities are such that we’re gonna end up with some sort of worldwide draft system; single method entry into the game.

How can MLB increase the pace of its game?

We’re having innings breaks that are longer than what’s required of the advertisements that have been sold. Step one on that one is to get back to the breaks that are required, and not any longer.

Are you pro- or anti-DH?

There’s still significant resistance in the National League to go into the designated hitter. … As a personal matter, I’ve never had one moment of dissonance about the fact that the National League and American League play with one different rule.

What are the plans for the A’s, Rays’ stadiums?

Stadium construction is fundamentally a local issue. The owner, the local government, the local communities have to be committed to the project. I share your view that Tampa and Oakland are situations that need to be addressed, and believe me, I’ll be making myself available to both owners, both clubs, to play whatever role they want me to play in helping them get their situations resolved.

Listen to clips from the in-depth interview below, and follow @MLBNetworkRadio on Twitter for offseason news and analysis.

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