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More Replay in Baseball…YES Please!
- Updated: July 20, 2012
Johan Santana threw a no hitter that wasn’t, Armando Galarraga didn’t throw a perfect game that really was. Notice anything wrong with this statement?
The ridiculousness of MLB not expanding instant replay is really starting to get annoying. This idea that we need the human element in baseball and will lose it if we have more replay is absurd. The human element is the human players playing the game and it should never be the umpiring crew. If you ever ask an umpire, ref, official, in any sport, what a perfect game for them would be, is for us to not notice them. Without more replay that’s not possible.
I’m not asking for robots at every base or an electronic strike zone (although K zone on ESPN seems pretty accurate), I just want the umpires to have the chance to get it right. There is no way we can expect them to be 100% right all of the time, but with replay they can be. As long as it’s adopted in the right way. We have plenty of other sports that have adopted it more extensively already namely the NFL, that MLB could learn from, good and bad.
As of right now, there are pending replay changes for 2012. In the new CBA fair/foul calls and whether a fly ball is caught or trapped was to be added to replay this season. The MLBPA, MLB, and Bud Selig all signed off on this. But apparently the umpires did not. Yeah you read that right, the umpires didn’t. Why in the world do the umpires have any say/sign off on something like this is what I want to know. They shouldn’t be in the rulemaking process, they are the rule enforcers.
Apparently these new rules will for sure go into place in 2013, which is a step in the right direction, but not complete. With these new rules, Galarraga still would not have a perfect game and Jim Joyce or any other umpire would not be able to correct a mistake, which leads us back to more confusing statements like the one I started with.
Some have said that instant replay wouldn’t work because of problems such as knowing where base runners would be placed in certain situations. For example, Carlos Beltran smacked a line drive down the third base line during Johan Santana’s “no-hitter” that clearly left a brown blemish on the white chalk line. The ball was fair, but called foul by the third base umpire and Santana’s no-hitter was preserved. If replay was available, the umpire would have seen the ball was fair and could have reversed his call. Beltran would have undoubtedly had a double. But, for the sake of argument, as a general rule in situations like this, giving the runner a single base would be better than nothing. Placing Beltran on first instead of calling him out would at least be a step in the right direction. It may not be the best solution, but I’m willing to bet if you asked Carlos Beltran he would have wanted his double, but would have been happy to be on first base rather than back in the dugout after that at-bat.
This article was Co-Authored by Jeronomous and Dirty
Photo courtesy of Keith Allison