Josh Hamilton robbed of a home run when umps refuse to review it

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Hamilton on second.jpgWhat’s the point of having replay review of home runs if the umps aren’t going to use it? Josh Hamilton was credited with a double on this play despite the fact that the ball clearly left the field of play.  It didn’t end up costing the Rangers the game, but it easily could have.

Let me once again make my plea:  put an ump up in the booth with TV monitors and a walkie-talkie.  Such a man could have seen that replay as quickly as the announcing crew did, buzzed the crew chief down on the field and the home run could have been called correctly.

To not do this is to ensure that at some point in the future a game — maybe even a really important game — will turn on a totally avoidable mistake.

Athletics and Mariners to begin the 2019 regular season in Tokyo

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Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle reports that the Oakland A’s and the Seattle Mariners will begin the 2019 regular season in Japan, in the Tokyo Dome.

The series will mark the third time that the A’s will begin their season in Japan, first doing it in 2008 against the Red Sox and then again in 2012 against the Mariners.

This is just the latest of Major League Baseball’s moves to expand the the game internationally. In addition to those previous series in Japan, the Dodgers and Diamondbacks opened their season in Australia in 2014 and the Dodgers and Padres will play a series in Mexico City this May. There has likewise been talk of the Mets playing a series in London, though those details have not yet been worked out. Obviously the World Baseball Classic represents the league’s effort to broaden the global scope of the once national pastime.

Get ready for early morning baseball, folks.