Joe Maddon is one of baseball's most forwarding-thinking minds, but it comes as a surprise that he's open to the idea of automated ball-strike balls.

"At one point, I thought I'd be totally against [automating ball-strike calls], but I can't tell you that I am now. I even think umpires would be fine with it, too," Maddon said. "Because I don't think there's an umpire out there that wants to negatively impact the game with a bad call."

Such a change is unlikely in the near future, but Rob Manfred has shown a ready embrace of structural change early in his tenure.