If you’re someone who doesn’t like NFL-style innovations in your baseball, this may be some bad news for you. Ben Walker of the Associated Press reports that major league umpires are going to discuss a plan with Major League Baseball that would give them microphones to explain replay decisions to the fans:
While nothing is set, Major League Baseball and umps are expected to discuss a plan — most prominently used in the NFL — for crew chiefs to wear a microphone and explain replay rulings.
Under one possible scenario, they would start at the All-Star Game on July 11 in Miami, tweak the process over the season’s second half and then go forward with the experiment in the playoffs.
People familiar with the talks spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because an agreement has not yet been reached.
Given that virtually all baseball replay calls are “out” or “safe,” I’m not sure why this is necessary, but “necessary” has never been at the top of the list when it comes to decisions dealing with replay.
Oh, and it will also add time to replay reviews which can drag as it is and will likely make umpires even more self-conscious about replay review which, I strongly suspect, has already made them more tentative on certain calls as it is.
What in the heck is the upside?