We have avoided arbitration yet again by locking down one-year deals with Carp, Tazawa, and Jonathan Herrera.
The big baseball news lately is the expansion of instant replay. Obviously, this has been a hot issue since it became an issue. Both sides of the debate have been pretty vocal in presenting their opinions, but I think it’s interesting and significant that the instant replay expansion was approved unanimously at the Owners Meeting, after which the Players Association and Umpires Association gave the go-ahead.
Starting this season, in addition to the review of close-call home runs, managers will have one challenge per game. The manager will be able to communicate with someone monitoring video being the scenes so he can make a decision about whether or not to use a challenge. As an extension of that, camera angles in all the parks now have to be standardized.
The has to verbalize his challenge to the umpire in a very detailed manner, so the umpire knows which parts of the play are being disputed, and in a timely manner, so the umpire doesn’t call for disciplinary action. If it’s denied, he’s used it up. If it’s approved, it’s replaced by another new challenge, but he can’t make more than two challenges. If he doesn’t use it before the seventh inning, it expires, and after the seventh inning, the umpire can elect to institute a review. All reviews will be conducted at the Majors media headquarters in New York, where four-umpire crews will be on hand, swapped out by rotation. Field umps would communicate with them via a headset behind home plate, and their decision would be final.
And, last but not least, now replays can be displayed on jumbotrons inside the park.
So most plays will now be potentially subject to review. As we all know, sometimes the lack of instant replay has burned us bad, and sometimes it’s helped us out. But that’s true for any team because it’s been the nature of the game; everything tends to balance in the end. Now, we’ll have to see whether instant replay balances things from the get-go. It’s just going to be a huge change. I mean, this is historic. Baseball has stayed the same for most of its existence when it comes to instant replay, in part because the technology didn’t exist in the early and middle years. Everything evolves, but we’re just going to wait and see what happens.
In other news, the Bruins lost to the Ducks, 2-5, and Kings, 2-4, but won a close one against the Sharks, one-zip, before losing to the Leafs, 4-3, and besting the Stars, 4-2. And the Pats, of course, bested the Colts by a healthy score of 43-22. Onward to Colorado!