Replay Rising

I want it to go away.

I want replay in baseball to go away because the slippery slope that it will eventually become has just left the starting gate. 

Beginning in 2012, replay will be expanded from fair or foul home runs, fan interference and whether a ball left the field on a home run to include determining if a ball was caught or trapped in the outfield.  Already, people are wondering and clamoring for replay to be expanded again to include safe or out and hit by a pitch/not hit by a pitch.  I am sure at some point those reviews will be allowed and supposedly everyone will be satisfied.

Before you get what you wish for, watch this clip and ponder the following question. 

If replay was available and the runner is called out correctly, what happens to the batter?  Keep in mind there is one out in the inning.

A-Call him out (he fell down while running to first).

B-Call him safe as no throw was made.

C-Send the hitter back to the plate with two outs and no runner on third. 

None of the three choices seem to be the right answer, do they?  Then how can replay be instituted when you cannot have a definite outcome of the entire play?  We can’t act as though one part of the play didn’t happen without the other.  You can’t automatically call the runner safe or out because the play was not completed.  And to have a do-over?  What is this, second grade Wiffle Ball?  “I wanna do-over or else I quit”. 

Here is the other thing.  If you are to use replay for one disputed call, you have to use it for all close calls.  You can’t choose to review a questionable play at first base without reviewing whether or not that same batter checked his swing on the previous pitch.  Let’s examine that scenario.  Suppose the Mets are playing the Marlins in their new but questionably financed stadium.  David Wright legs out a base hit only to have the replay show the throw to first beat him by a step.  Then later in the game, the enemy known as Jose Reyes checks his swing and walks on a 3-2 slider .  The replay shows he did go around but since the call is not reviewable, Reyes stands on first and scores the eventual winning run.   Are you telling me that is acceptable?  I would much rather have no replay than having the opposing team get the benefit of replay on a particular call but my team can’t because the call it is not reviewable. 

For replay to work and be truly be error-free, every single close call must be reviewed.   As much as I love baseball, I don’t want to spend 6 hours in a stadium because there were 100 reviewable calls in the game.  Besides, if replay was used for every close play we couldn’t have arguments like this.



  1. Bob Shvodian

    Weaver’s best rampages were against ump Ron Luciano, who once tossed Weaver
    out of both ends of DH. Luciano once deliberately called two outside pitches as strikes on a O’s batter, got Weaver out at plate & tossed him & then told O’s batter that he qwed him a couple because he deliberately calle pitches strikes so that he could oust Weaver. When Luciano died, Weaver was asked for a comment & he
    said “Luciano was a lousy umpire”.

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