KBO ties no longer count as lossesGeneral managers from all eight teams in the Korea Baseball Organization gathered in Seoul on Tuesday to discuss and make changes to the tie rule - the third time in four seasons - and the number of games played in a season.
Ties will no longer count as losses when calculating winning percentage and general managers agreed to increase the number of games from 133 this year to 140 in 2012.
Draws counted as losses for the last two seasons and tie games have been called after 12 innings during the regular season, 15 innings in the playoffs.
In 2008, the league briefly scrapped ties and forced teams to play until a winner was decided.
But managers strongly opposed the change for fear of the physical toll on their players, even though only six games in 2008 went beyond 13 innings. The KBO went back to the 12-inning tie rule starting in 2009.
But more important for playoff implications starting with the 2011 season is that ties will no longer bring down teams’ winning percentages.
In 2009 and 2010, winning percentage was simply calculated as wins divided by the number of games played. For example, the first-place SK Wyverns had 84 wins, 47 losses and two ties in 133 games in 2010, for a winning percentage of .632.
Managers have argued that they shouldn’t be penalized for tying games, prompting general managers to agree to switch back to the old formula, in which winning percentage is calculated with the number of wins divided by the sum of wins and losses. Ties simply don’t count.
This method is also used by the Nippon Professional Baseball league in Japan, where teams also play to ties.
The 2010 SK Wyverns would have had a slightly higher winning percentage of .641 with this formula.
The KBO used the Japanese formula from its inaugural season in 1982 to 1986, and again from 1998 to 2002 and from 2005 to 2007.
From 1987 to 1997, ties gave teams half of a win, and the winning percentage equaled the sum of wins and ties divided by the number of games. In 2003 and 2004, rankings were determined by the number of victories, not by winning percentage.
Changes will be finalized pending the possible launch of an expansion KBO team for either 2011 or 2012.
NCsoft Corp., a local online game developer, in December expressed interest in setting up a ninth team, with two other unidentified companies also expressing interest KBO.
In addition, when teams play more games, the size of their rosters will increase from 26 players to 27, general managers said.
The KBO will convene a board meeting of team presidents next Tuesday, when executives will discuss the feasibility of adding an extra club to the league. The other rule changes made at the general managers’ meeting are all final.