June 3, 2010

Blown call on Galarraga’s perfecto sparks baseball’s great instant replay debate

So out.You’ve all heard about what happened at Comerica Park last night. But if you haven’t heard first base umpire Jim Joyce’s postgame remarks, take a listen.

Give this man some credit. He isn’t lying through his teeth like some umps would. He isn’t proud of that call. He is as genuine as can be, and feels like he just made the biggest mistake of his life.

So what does this mean for instant replay? Because everyone feels so sorry for both Armando Galarraga and Joyce, instant replay rules will be expanded. But the question is how?

People on Twitter and ESPN’s Jayson Stark suggest a challenge system. I wouldn’t mind that. My specific rules would be each manager gets one challenge to use on anything except balls and strikes, but any close call in the eighth inning or later automatically gets reviewed (like the NFL).

However, Fox sportswriter Jon Paul Morosi’s idea to change this call as an isolated incident is ridiculous. My major problem with it is what about the rest of the major blown calls in baseball history? Reverse them too? If not, how do you think the Cardinals would feel about the 1985 World Series? How about the Twins last year in the ALDS?

You can’t just change one major call and none others. But because of the magnitude of Joyce’s call, Bud Selig will almost certainly institute expanded instant replay rules (hopefully using my suggestion).

UPDATE: There is breaking news on ESPN now saying, “MLB reviewing Jim Joyce’s missed call which cost Armando Galarraga a perfect game.” If this is what I think it is, and Selig overturns this call, I will have a serious problem. I’ll keep you posted on this, as it is a huge baseball story (sadly bigger than Ken Griffey Jr.’s retirement).

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