Friday, May 1, 2009

MLB & Instant Replay

Tonight, the Brewers appeared to be heading into the bottom of the 8th with the lead, which would prompt the all-time saves leader Trevor Hoffman to get up and get loose to close out the top of the 9th following. So far Hoffman has pitched well coming off of the DL...but, he wouldn't get the chance.

After two quick outs, Carlos Villanueva got himself into trouble by issuing a frustrating two out walk to Conor Jackson and then gave up a single to Mark Reynolds to put runners on the corners....cue the steady, Sheffield's House sponsored, Todd Coffey to clean up the mess that he is so often given. Coffey got Upton to put the ball on the ground, unfortunately the ball spiked straight down, killing the momentum and allowing there to be no play as Bill Hall hopelessly watched, hoping the ball would roll foul - it didn't, tie game.

The next play is a play that we Brewer fans hope aren't looking back on in September (or October this year due to the WBC). Pinch Hitter Tony Clark put a ball down the left field line that snuck behind the standard camera angle...fair? foul? Fair was the call, two runs score.

Replay seemed to show the ball hitting left of the line for a foul ball. The two Brewers on the line, Hall and Kendall, are hopping mad at the call, but third base umpire Brian Gorman saw it differently. I, in the moment, lose all objectivity and throw a tantrum, fellow Sheffield's House contributor, Lange, calms me down and I start rationally thinking again.
has to be an almost impossible call, I would think, for an umpire standing around the infield to call, as it cuts the fair/foul border almost ridiculously as close as it can be. Umpire Brian Gorman stood by his call after watching the replay after the game, saying that a piece of the line was missing, though he asks a reporter, seemingly for assurance, "Doesn't it look like it hit some of the line?" The way I see it though, the ball hit left of the line, kicking up dirt throwing said dirt onto the line (hence the missing piece of line).

Fair or Foul?

This play, technically, cost the Brewers the game. Sure, an argument can be made that Jackson shouldn't have been walked. Coffey though, saying the right things, said, “Regardless of whatever happens, the calls, I didn’t get my job done. I didn’t stop it. I’ve got to come in there and get the outs." Coffey tseems to tell his true thoughts after that statement though, “It irritates you a little bit. I don’t know what he saw. I saw what I saw."

Macha, being an old school type of guy thinks replay shouldn't have any part of baseball, “I don’t like instant replay on any of the calls.”

I personally feel that MLB should get with the times and accept instant replay in a larger capacity than just homerun calls. The NFL realized its importance and is a better game because of it, even the NBA and NHL use replay to make sure calls are correct. One worry MLB officials have is that the game is already too long, and replay would slow it even more.....sure, unless this happens to a Lou Piniella type of manager who goes on a 10 minute tirade.

I say lets get the calls right the first time, let there be no doubt about the outcome of a game. The Brewers found out last season that one game means everything, just squeaking by the Mets to get in the playoffs.

What are your thoughts on instant replay's place in baseball? Please comment or send an email to

*My thoughts - If the play were to be reviewed, I do not see it being overturned as it is ever so close. It should have been called correctly the first time though*

Article from
Tom Haudricourt's blog on

1 comment:

A.Guss said...

I wish I had the video replay still. There was a fan that pointed fair first, then foul. Not to say the ump believed the fan but you never know.