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The replay proposal was well-received? We sure about that?

Aug 16, 2013, 11:00 AM EDT

Joyce blown call

Yes, I know I’m beating this to death. Sorry. It’s what I do. You want more A-Rod stories? Didn’t think so.

Anyway, a companion to that “MLB wanting us to accept the challenge system on their word” thing is the “declaration of victory” thing. People talking about yesterday’s replay announcement as if it were overwhelmingly well received. Baseball does this a lot, actually. It says something and then asserts that everyone is on board and points at anyone saying otherwise with the “wow, that guy is crazy” look on their face.  As the guy often being pointed at as crazy, I’ve seen it happen a lot. I realize I look like this much of the time.

But here is what I’m talking about. The headline from USA Today:


The people have spoken! Now here are quotes from two managers from the article. First Bob Melvin, who is portrayed as one of the people approving of the change:

“So, if someone’s watching it and is on top of it and has the use of replay very quickly, that certainly doesn’t sound like a bad thing to me,” says Melvin, who admits he used to be against replay.

See that assumption? “someone watching and on top of it.” Actually, Bob, this proposal does not have someone watching and on top of it. That’s on you. If you decide a play was made improperly it’s your burden to alert everyone. Then someone steps in for a review. That’s yesterday’s proposal.

Then Joe Maddon, who first offers some pithy quotes about technology being great and replay being part of that:

“I just don’t like the idea that the earlier part of the game is considered less important,” he says. “I know we’ve lost games in the first inning. You can lose games in the second inning. I don’t know if that’s something based on research that there are fewer umpire mistakes in the first part of the game than in the latter part of the game.”

But, he’ll take whatever version he can get.

If people want to call this a positive reaction that’s their right. But it seems to be actually negative with respect to the actual proposal.

Everyone wants the calls right. That’s not debatable. So when someone says “we just want the calls right” or even “replay is good,” that is not an endorsement of yesterdays’ announcement. The only specific comments I’ve seen thus far are either skeptical of a challenge system or skeptical of the one specifically proposed.

If there is to be a debate about the merits of this plan, let’s have the debate. Let’s not make sure everyone lines up behind MLB’s proposal and have some premature declaration of victory.

  1. beearl - Aug 16, 2013 at 11:08 AM

    Well, to be fair, there was this quote from Maddon in the article as well:

    “Of course I like it,” Maddon says. “I like flat-screen TVs with high definition. I like air conditioning in my 1956 Bel Air. I like computers. To just bury your head in the sand and just reference old-school all the time is really a poor argument.

    Seems generally positive to me. He may have issue with some of the details, but overall he seems to be behind it.

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Aug 16, 2013 at 11:19 AM

      He’s behind the idea of instant replay, not the way MLB wants to implement it. Hence his comment about the game can be lost in the first couple of innings.

    • cggarb - Aug 16, 2013 at 11:19 AM

      Joe Maddon likes instant replay. That is not the same thing as saying Joe Maddon likes MLB’s proposal. White’s article says the latter.

      I like hot dogs. That does not mean I endorse 7/11’s hot dogs.

      • missthemexpos - Aug 16, 2013 at 12:58 PM

        Has anyone ever endorsed 7/11 hot dogs?

  2. dan1111 - Aug 16, 2013 at 11:09 AM

    Whoever thought the proposal was well-received obviously wasn’t reading this site…

  3. flamethrower101 - Aug 16, 2013 at 11:09 AM

    Now here comes MLB fining Bob Melvin and Joe Maddon for their comments about it. Because anything negative about anything Bud does makes Bud an angry man. And you wouldn’t like him when he’s angry.

    What the {expletive} am I saying? We don’t like him anyway.

  4. flamethrower101 - Aug 16, 2013 at 11:10 AM

    Also to note. This isn’t official yet. It has to be approved by the owners, the Players’ Association, and the Umpire’s Union if I’m correct. If this thing really isn’t as “well-received” as MLB would like to brainwash us into thinking, then I don’t see how it gets voted in.

  5. hojo20 - Aug 16, 2013 at 11:17 AM

    Even seeing the replay 100+ times, i still don’t know if Jorge Posada tagged Jeremy Giambi out.

    • Walk - Aug 16, 2013 at 5:44 PM

      The braves added something to their broadcasts recently called the phantom cam. It records something like 5000 frames per second where a normal slow mo cam is less than 400 fps. I think this will go a long way to helping get calls correct as it has shown some very crisp pictures on close plays. Hopefully other teams adopt this camera as well.

      • jdillydawg - Aug 16, 2013 at 9:39 PM

        Seriously? That’s ridiculous. How perfect do we have to be before we’re satisfied?

  6. baseball15best - Aug 16, 2013 at 11:29 AM

    I need to know right now how this will be incorporated into MLB The Show 14 so I can start practicing. Probably be some weird flick of a stick while holding the diamond and the L1 and R2 buttons. I also plan on re-playing every season of Earl Weavers managerial career using my new rights to challenge to see how many more games I could have won if it wasn’t for those humans standing in the way all the time.

  7. crispybasil - Aug 16, 2013 at 11:30 AM

    You either die a blogger or live long enough to see yourself become a lawyer.

  8. dlf9 - Aug 16, 2013 at 11:37 AM

    Criticism of the replay system from a non-sports based website:

  9. brewcrewfan54 - Aug 16, 2013 at 11:57 AM

    You may hate the way it looks on paper but for crying out loud lets see how it works in an actual game before it gets shot to hell. The NFL challenge system was ‘t exactly awesome at first but coaches have learned to use it and seems to do a decent job.

    • pharmerbrown - Aug 16, 2013 at 12:18 PM

      Don’t forget that NFL has expanded its use, without adding additional challenges, by making scoring plays and all plays inside 2 minutes of the end of halves automatically reviewable.

      • brewcrewfan54 - Aug 16, 2013 at 12:27 PM

        Exactly. The system can be tweeked as they see fit to make it better. Lets just get a system going. It’ll never be perfect but once it gets going everyone can see what’s working at what doesn’t.

      • jdillydawg - Aug 16, 2013 at 9:36 PM

        And football games have become more about analyzing the instant replay analyst than the actual play. Does anyone else find it absurd that the networks actually have a commentator whose job it is to tell the viewers whether or not the instant replay official actually got the call right?

        I mean, if instant replay is the answer, of course they got it right!


    • pixteca - Aug 16, 2013 at 12:42 PM

      Right, it looks awful on paper but let’s wait until it is tried in a game. It will be awful too but then you won’t be able to take it away.

      It is better to not use it until you get something that looks better on paper first.

    • brewcrewfan54 - Aug 16, 2013 at 1:00 PM

      The only thing awful about it right now is that its new. I’m not endorsing the system but as I said lets see it in a game first.

  10. gmenfan1982 - Aug 16, 2013 at 12:19 PM

    I don’t see why all leagues (MLB, NFL, etc) don’t do it like college football. Have someone at every game working in a booth. Any play they deem is worth looking at, they buzz down to the field and stop play while they take a look. Its an easy, quick way to get any call right. Every play should have the ability to be called correctly, not just challenged plays.

  11. chiadam - Aug 16, 2013 at 12:27 PM

    1. beat horse to death
    2. beat some more
    3. bury mangled horse
    4. dig up horse
    5. beat some more
    6. beat some more
    7. beat some more
    8. beat some more
    9. high five

    • dlf9 - Aug 16, 2013 at 12:46 PM

      1. click link
      2. spend time writing complaint
      3. repeat

    • heyblueyoustink - Aug 16, 2013 at 12:52 PM

      You get points for the high five only if you did it while jumping in the air and yelling ” YO! ADRIAN! I DID IT! “

  12. wpjohnson - Aug 16, 2013 at 12:33 PM

    Baseball is the greatest game ever invented. However, Selig seems s determined to ruin it as Obama is to destroy our capitalist system.

    • koufaxmitzvah - Aug 16, 2013 at 1:00 PM

      Thank you for reminding me how its Liberals like me who bring politics into every discussion.

      Oh, and I guess I’ll be the one to do this, but Obama isn’t really a Socialist. I know, I know…. the fat man on the radio claims to know everything. And while that fat man knows how to do things pop pills and rape Dominican boys on his private jet plane, the fat man on the radio can not define Socialism unless the Koch Brothers write it out phonetically for him.

      There. I kind of feel better.

  13. Senor Cardgage - Aug 16, 2013 at 4:53 PM

    Actually, Bob, this proposal does not have someone watching and on top of it. That’s on you. If you decide a play was made improperly it’s your burden to alert everyone. Then someone steps in for a review.

    Why is this a bad thing? If you look out, and really you should have been out (the neighborhood play, the ball beat you by a mile, etc.), and your manager believes you were out to the point that he doesn’t even argue, is it really such an injustice if careful examination of the video shows you might have been safe? Is it really worth interrupting the game for every little thing?

    The calls that are going to be corrected are the ones managers are already arguing over. There’s no need for an abundance of extra stoppages.

    • jdillydawg - Aug 16, 2013 at 9:32 PM

      I agree, there is no need for an abundance of extra stoppages. But they are inevitable.

      The 3 hour game will be a thing of the past. The 5 hour game will become reality – right along with the 5 hour football game and round of golf. Can’t wait.

  14. jdillydawg - Aug 16, 2013 at 9:30 PM

    Instant replay sucks. In all sports. My opinion doesn’t matter, though, it’s a road we’re going down – no matter what.

    The World Umpires Association, however, should be looking to close up shop and a bunch of boys in blue should be preppin’ their resumes. In a few short years, Blue won’t be necessary anywhere on the field. With replay, absolutely no reason to have them there.

    Sad, sad day for baseball. But hey, at least we can continue the impossible quest for perfection!

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