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Sports Then and Now



How to Improve the Game of Baseball in an Instant 0

Posted on November 25, 2012 by Rick Swanson

 

Executive VP of Baseball Operations argues that instant replay would slow down the game of baseball.

Joe Torre was recently quoted saying this about instant replay: “The thing is our game is a little unique. There’s not a lot of time stoppage, so to make sure that if we do implement replay … you’re [not] going to slow this game down and you’re going to upset the rhythm of the game.”

The only way for instant replay to work if it is done in an instant.

Baseball has never used a clock in the game but if they use it for instant replay, it would really speed up the game.

If each replay was limited to 30 seconds and if each team only had two challenges per game, the game would only be increased by a minute or two at the most.

No more arguing with the umpire. If the manager has to toss out a red ball across the foul line to signify a challenge he won’t waste time getting all upset with any umpire again.

The way to make this work, is to only give the manager five seconds to decide if he wants to use up a challenge.

After five seconds if the red ball is not tossed across the white lines, then everyone gets to see all the replays.

There is no need to stop showing them in the park, because the manager did not object, so why should fans be upset if the call was bad or not?

The burden now lies with each team, to decide if they want to dispute any call.

If each team has only two challenges a game only two minutes would be added to the game. (If the team wins both challenges they would continue until getting one wrong.)

This only works if the umpires stay on the field, and watch the giant screen with all in the park at the same time.

After 30 seconds all four umpires would give their decision one at a time. If the verdict is tied two and two, then the one who made the original call gets to decide.

The technology is available on every big screen in every park in MLB.

Why can’t everyone look at the same play again?

Why is baseball afraid to show replays on big screens in every park?

Fans would be able to watch along on the big screen while umpires decided the fate of their call.

All every fan wants to see every call be correct. Nobody wants to see a perfect game erased, because of a bad call by an umpire.

Baseball and instant replay were meant for each other, but as stated earlier the key word is instant.

Next we need to show every pitch to everyone in the park, to make the umpires follow the rules of the sport.

Baseball: The Timeless Sport With A Clock 0

Posted on November 24, 2012 by Rick Swanson

If baseball is going to use a challenge rule with instant replay, the best place to find guidelines is with tennis.

Since 2006 the electric line call, known as the “Chase Review” has been used at the US Open.

Tennis has tried electronic line calling since 1974, but since 2006 the technology has been created by a system known in tennis as the hawk eye system.

Each player is allowed three incorrect challenges per set.

The average length of a challenge is about ten seconds.

In tennis, everyone in the stands is allowed to see the review and then the call stands.

In baseball we should use the hawkeye cameras to follow the ball at all times.

We also need to let everyone in the park see the hawkeye instant replays.

The amount of challenges is something that baseball is going to need to decide.

If we put it at three wrong challenges per game, will teams use it too often?

Since you have only five seconds to decide whether to challenge a call, then we need an official clock in each park.

If baseball started using a clock, we could also shorten the length of the games.

If we had a clock for replays, then we would have a clock to follow MLB rule 8.04, which reads:

Rule 8.04  When the bases are unoccupied, the pitcher shall deliver the ball to the batter within 12 seconds after he receives the ball. Each time the pitcher delays the game by violating this rule, the umpire shall call “Ball.” The 12-second timing starts when the pitcher is in possession of the ball and the batter is in the box, alert to the pitcher. The timing stops when the pitcher releases the ball.

The intent of this rule is to avoid unnecessary delays.

A clock would be used for replays set at 30 seconds. A clock would be used for challenges at five seconds, and a clock would be used for pitchers rule 8.04 at 12 seconds.

We could even use the clock for the time spent between innings. Cut it down to 90 seconds, and we could cut another 18 minutes off the entire length of a game.

Baseball has prided itself as a timeless sport, but as we move into the future, a clock will be the new innovation we will use for the good of the game.

Proof Positive Why Baseball Needs Replay 0

Posted on October 25, 2012 by Rick Swanson

Replay Will Cut Down On This.

The non-call at second base during Game One of the NLCS was another example of not using replays to make the right call.

Clearly Matt Holliday was past the bag, and he used a barrel roll into Marco Scutaro. Any competent umpire should have called runner interference, and ruled it a double play.

How could Rich Gedman be called for being out of the baseline (in 1988 ALCS) for what he did, when Holliday was past the bag when he started to slide?

He should have been ejected and banned from the next game.

One look at the replay and you could see he broke the rules. It was a dirty play. Umpires need to follow the rules, and then don’t.

If you looked at a replay you can tell in one look if he made the wrong call.

Just give each manager three chances a game to use instant replay.

If you get them all right, you can keep using them all game.

Each time a manager throws the red ball on the field he will be challenging a call. No need to argue, just toss the red ball and we all get to use instant replay.

The umpires will turn and everyone in the park will watch the big screen and in 10 seconds there will be four angles of the questionable play, and at the end of ten seconds the ball, glove, and player will be frozen on the screen.

The umpire will either raise his hand in an out signal or signal safe with both hands.

Read the rest of this entry →

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