NEW YORK—In response to widespread calls to end the barbaric practice, Major League Baseball issued a statement Thursday banning electric prods as a means to force players into batting cages. “There is no doubt the prods work, but giving players a painful shock in order to drive them into batting cages is both cruel and inhumane,” said MLB commissioner Bud Selig, noting that many veteran players show visible scarring from years of being guided into the cages with the two-pronged high-voltage electrical devices. “If these players are simply given more time out in the field during games, they will be far less reluctant to get in the cages later. Most are visibly terrified the second they see their manager get the prod out, and once they catch a glimpse of the pitching machine, it’s far more difficult to move them without a fight.” Reached for comment, many MLB managers revealed their skepticism regarding an effective method to move larger, more aggressive players like Matt Adams and A.J. Pierzynski into a batting cage without some level of brute force.