Thursday, January 16, 2014

"Upon Further Review,
He damn sure wuz Out at First Base"

Major League Baseball has agreed to terms with the players association and the umpires' union to introduce expanded Video Replay to get calls correct, in every game, 
starting this 2014 season.

This, the first major change to baseball's rules, in my lifetime.
I have already gasped/fainted, so that's over. (the DH rule in 1973 notwithstanding)

The new system will give team managers most of the power to trigger reviews, by providing them with one challenge per game, along with a second potential challenge if their first challenge is upheld. Much like the way NCAA college and NFL football games are done.

Only after a manager has used up all of his challenges, and only from the 7th inning on, would umpires be authorized to initiate a review on their own.

In addition to home runs, expanded replay was unanimously approved by MLB owners for the following plays:

• Ground-rule double
• Fan interference
• Stadium boundary calls
• Force play*
• Tag play
• Fair/foul in outfield only 
• Trap play in outfield only
• Batter hit by pitch (or not)
• Timing play (a.--whether a run scores before the third out recorded; b.--whether a runner has tagged his base after a flyballl caught, and less than two outs, is recorded)
• Touching a base (requires appeal)
• Passing runners
• Record keeping

*Except a fielder's actually tagging second on a double play,
the so-called "neighborhood play".

Neither Don Denkinger nor Jim Joyce, both umpires who made stunningly WRONG calls on the basepaths, could be reached for immediate comment; though in 2012, Denkinger voiced support for instant replay, in defense of Joyce's horrible call at the end (8-2/3) 
of a Tiger pitcher's Perfect Game:  "There are so many areas you can use instant replay," Denkinger said, according to the New York Post. "Maybe instant replay can clean things up. If a play is missed, it can be corrected. I didn't feel that way in '85, but I feel that way now."

This season officially begins in Sydney, Australia on March 22, with two games between the Arizona Diamondbacks (home) vs. the Los Angeles Dodgers.  Replays will be a necessity for diehard fans, to watch in a normal timezone, next day.

The World Champion Boston Red Sox will be in Baltimore, and the Cardinals will open with the Reds in Cincinnati, both on Monday, March 31.

Hummm, both games in Baltimore and Cincinnati will involve Birds and Socks... (Orioles and Cardinals, and Red Sox and Redlegs)

No comments: