MLB Expands Instant Replay

All 30 Major League Baseball clubs have approved expanding instant replay starting next season, the MLB announced early Thursday afternoon

MGN Online

PARADISE VALLEY, Ariz. (WIBW) -- All 30 Major League Baseball clubs have approved expanding instant replay starting next season, the MLB announced early Thursday afternoon. The Major League Baseball Players Association and World Umpires Association have both signed off on the plan, it added.

"I am very pleased that instant replay will expand to include additional impactful plays," Baseball Commissioner Allan H. (Bud) Selig. "The new system will give managers valuable recourse in potentially game-changing situations. The opportunity for our fans to see more replays in our ballparks is also an important modification that the Clubs and I favored.

The Major League Baseball Players Association and World Umpires Association have both signed off on the plan, it added.

"I thank the Major League Players and Umpires for their cooperation with this change, which will serve our shared game well. I also extend my gratitude to John Schuerholz, Joe Torre, Tony La Russa, Peter Woodfork and Chris Marinak, all of whom worked extremely hard to make this highly complicated task a reality."

The new system covers everything from how managers call for replays, which plays are subject to review, and how the reviews will be handled.

Managers will have at least one challenge per game to use. If any part of the challenge is upheld, the managers get to retain their challenge. They are capped at two challenges per game.

If the manager has exhausted their challenges or it is after the 7th inning, the crew chief may invoke instant replay.

Below is a list of reviewable plays (courtesy of MLB):


The following play types will be subject to review:
•Home run
•Ground rule double
•Fan interference
•Stadium boundary calls (e.g., fielder into stands, ball into stands triggering dead ball)
•Force play (except the fielder's touching of second base on a double play)
•Tag play (including steals and pickoffs)
•Fair/foul in outfield only
•Trap play in outfield only
•Batter hit by pitch
•Timing play (whether a runner scores before a third out)
•Touching a base (requires appeal)
•Passing runners
•Record keeping (Ball-strike count to a batter, outs, score, and substitutions)

All other plays will not be reviewable; however, the Umpires may still convene on the field at any time to discuss the play.

•Field managers may initiate replay review on one reviewable play per game by verbally indicating his intention to challenge, in a timely manner, to the Crew Chief. Guidelines will be established to determine whether a challenge is timely.
•The manager may request that the umpire review multiple portions of the same play, but he must specify exactly which portions of the play he is challenging.
•If any portion of a challenged play is overturned, the manager who challenged the play will retain the ability to challenge one more play during the game. No manager may challenge more than two plays in a game.
•Once the manager has exhausted his ability to challenge plays during the game and after the beginning of the seventh inning, the Crew Chief may choose to invoke instant replay on any reviewable call. In that circumstance, the Crew Chief is not obligated to invoke instant replay if requested by the manager.
•Home run calls that are currently subject to instant replay review will continue to be reviewed at the Crew Chief's discretion. Managers may request that an Umpire review a home run call, but managers cannot challenge home run calls.

•Once instant replay review is invoked (either by the Manager or the Crew Chief), the Crew Chief will signal to the official scorer that the play is under review.
•The Crew Chief and at least one other umpire will then move to a designated communication location near home plate, where they will have access to a hard-wired headset connected to the Replay Command Center in New York.
•Major League Umpires will be staffed as Replay Officials at the Replay Command Center, located at MLB Advanced Media headquarters, for all Major League games.
•The Replay Command Center will have direct access to video from most cameras in the ballpark in real-time, regardless of whether they are shown on the live broadcast.
•The Replay Official will look at the video feeds and determine if there is clear and convincing evidence to overturn the call on the field. If the Replay Official overturns a call on the field, he will also use his judgment to determine where to appropriately place runners if the play had been called correctly on the field.
•The umpires on the field will not have a monitor to review the play and they will not leave the field at any time.
•The Replay Official will make the ultimate determination of whether to overturn the call.
•On-Field personnel may not argue with the decision of the Replay Official.

•To determine whether to challenge a play, personnel in the dugout will be permitted to communicate with a video specialist in the Clubhouse who has access to the same video that is available to Replay Officials. This communication will occur via the dugout phone.
•Both the home and visiting Clubs will have standardized technology to ensure each Club has equal access to all video.
•No monitors or additional electronic equipment will be permitted in the dugout.

•Clubs will now have the right to show replays of all close plays on its ballpark scoreboard, regardless of whether the play is reviewed.

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