We probably should have known as much, but FanHouse’s Jeff
Fletcher reports that Bud Selig said today that he’s “comfortable” with no further
expansion of instant replay.
Which means he’s comfortable with blown calls that don’t need to be blown. He’s comfortable with pennant races and possibly playoff games altered as a result of an inability to overrule obvious mistakes from an increasingly fallible umpire corps. He’s comfortable with baseball becoming the object of ridicule the next time some high profile gaffe occurs in which millions see what should have happened but the four men in blue who missed it aren’t allowed to see it themselves.
I’m sorry, but this is unacceptable. I am all for tradition and conservatism and incremental change when it comes to baseball, but at some point the burden of proof shifted from those who wanted instant replay to make its case for such a beast to those who would deny all sense and all technology to prevent its implementation to make theirs.
I don’t care if Bud Selig is comfortable. I want to hear from him why we should be comfortable in allowing baseball to continue to ignore reality and technology and stick with a system that gave us the Galarraga call and so many mistakes last fall.
I don’t think he has a good reason.
If you throw the word “luck” into a sports conversation you’re gonna anger some people because people don’t like to ever chalk up their own success or their team’s success to anything apart from their own skill, worthiness and merit. What we usually refer to as “luck,” however, is not meant to detract from one’s merit. It’s more about outcomes that were not necessarily predictable or expected given all of the known variables.
Thing is, we really don’t have a concise and compact word that captures the notion of “unreasonably underperforming or unreasonably outperforming one’s statistical expectations,” so the word “luck” is about as good as we can do. Sorry if that offends, but focus more on what we’re getting at when we talk about sports luck and less about how you feel about the concept of luck in general, OK?
With that in mind, know that, according to Rob Arthur of FiveThirtyEight, the Cubs have been the unluckiest franchise in baseball history in terms of turning success into championships. Given how much they’ve won over the years, they should have had six or seven championships and not the two they have (with none for 108 years, of course).
The luckiest? The Yankees. While they have obviously been immensely talented throughout their history, the numbers suggest that they should “only” have 19 or 20 World Series titles. They have 27. They’d still have the most if everyone performed at their level of statistical expectations, but their 16-title lead over the next most successful World Series team — the Cardinals — should not be as great as it is.
Kyle Schwarber made a quicker-than-expected recovery from ACL surgery and then, after an Arizona Fall League rehab assignment, was shuttled up to Cleveland for the World Series. But that’s not all he has done.
Schwarber is now the latest ever Best Shape of His Life All-Star. Or so says Kris Bryant, talking to Patrick Mooney of CSNChicago.com:
“We’ve seen first-hand the work that he’s putting in and how hard he’s been going . . . Honestly, I saw him out — maybe a couple weeks after his surgery — and he’s moving around, walking. And I’m like: ‘Dang, this guy’s not human. How? I saw your leg bend in half, and you’re walking around. This is unbelievable . . .(It’s) watching him dripping with sweat every single day. Every single day, this guy is drenched. I feel like he’s in the best shape of his life (now). There was no doubt in my mind that he could do it. It was just a matter of if they let him.”
May as well just forfeit now, Indians. No way you can deal with an October BSOHL guy.