Further review: Don't be so hasty

  • Article by: MICHAEL RAND , Star Tribune
  • Updated: April 15, 2011 - 12:44 AM

Baseball says it wants more replay, but is it really necessary?

hide

A view of baseball’s instant replay display, circa 2008 in the umpires’ room at Wrigley Field in Chicago. Baseball is leaning toward expanding replay for 2012 to include trapped balls and fair-or-foul rulings.

Photo: Steve Green, Associated Press

CameraStar Tribune photo galleries

Cameraview larger

Major League Baseball's heavy hitters favor what might be an inevitable expansion of instant replay use starting in 2012, according to an Associated Press report.

It would include the ability to review whether a ball was trapped or caught, and whether batted balls were fair or foul (the latter known informally around these parts as the Mauer Mandate or the Cuzzi Clause). Balls and strikes, as well as out/safe calls at bases, would not be reviewable -- bad news for the next pitcher to lose a perfect game on a blown call on the final out, which will never happen again in the history of baseball.

For the record: This writer doesn't want more replay in baseball -- a position that perhaps makes one part of the minority. Based on the plays that would be reviewable, how do you determine where base runners should wind up if a ball that was originally ruled foul or caught is subsequently ruled fair or not caught? And what happens to runners already on the bases if a trapped ball is later ruled a catch?

We're not going to harp on the "baseball has a human element" argument because that one doesn't carry as much weight. Replay just doesn't work for as many situations in baseball nearly as well as it does in other sports.

Toward the end of the 2008 season, baseball added limited replay -- the first of its kind in the sport -- only to determine whether a potential home run was fair or foul, and whether it cleared the playing field or not. In a fluid sport such as baseball, with moving parts on every play, reviews of a home run (a very self-contained play) make sense.

The NFL (old replay system started in 1986, new one in 1999) is full of such self-contained moments. So is the NBA, which started replay during the 2002-03 season. In-out calls in tennis, which have been reviewable for several years thanks to technology, constitute another great use of replay.

But let's not mess with baseball. It's hardly perfect; part of its makeup, however, is that it can't be perfected.

  • related content

  • 4/15/11: The game plan

    Friday April 15, 2011

    04.15.11 THE GAME PLANTHE BUZZ Joe Mauer and his millions of dollars are headed for the disabled list, which sarcastic...

  • What they might be doing today ...

    Friday April 15, 2011

    WHAT THEY MIGHT BE DOING TODAY ...The Lynx might be ready to seize some momentum in a town full of...

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions
Final123456789RHE
Chicago WSox000002010380
Minnesota «00100030X460
@Ballpark Replay
Preview | Matchup | Lineup | Log | Wrap | Box
W:J.Burton(2-2) L:R.Belisario(3-7) S:G.Perkins (25)
HR: CWS- A.Nieto (1) MIN- None

ADVERTISEMENT

Toronto - WP: A. Sanchez 5 FINAL
NY Yankees - LP: D. Robertson 4
Washington - WP: D. Fister 4 FINAL
Cincinnati - LP: M. Latos 2
Arizona - LP: V. Nuno 2 FINAL
Philadelphia - WP: R. Hernandez 4
Boston - WP: A. Webster 3 FINAL
Tampa Bay - LP: C. Archer 2
NY Mets - WP: J. deGrom 2 FINAL
Milwaukee - LP: J. Nelson 0
Miami - WP: J. Turner 4 FINAL
Houston - LP: C. McHugh 2
Chicago WSox - LP: R. Belisario 3 FINAL
Minnesota - WP: J. Burton 4
Cleveland - WP: D. Salazar 10 FINAL
Kansas City - LP: B. Chen 3
St. Louis - WP: A. Wainwright 1 FINAL
Chicago Cubs - LP: K. Hendricks 0
Detroit - LP: J. Chamberlain 1 FINAL
LA Angels - WP: J. Smith 2
Pittsburgh - WP: T. Watson 7 FINAL
Colorado - LP: R. Brothers 5
Baltimore - WP: T. McFarland 3 FINAL
Seattle - LP: Y. Medina 2
San Diego - LP: E. Stults 3 FINAL
Atlanta - WP: M. Minor 8
Oakland - WP: S. Kazmir 9 FINAL
Texas - LP: M. Mikolas 3
Los Angeles - WP: H. Ryu 4 FINAL
San Francisco - LP: J. Peavy 3
FC Dallas 2 FINAL
Vancouver FC 2
Portland 3 FINAL
Montreal 2
Calgary 26 FINAL
Edmonton 22
Winnipeg 23 FINAL
Brt Columbia 6
Ottawa 23 FINAL
Hamilton 33
Toronto 9 FINAL
Saskatchewan 37
Minnesota 76 FINAL
Connecticut 65
Atlanta 67 FINAL
Washington 77
Chicago 69 FINAL
Tulsa 79
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: Should the Twins replace Ron Gardenhire?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close