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Baseball Replay Is Here

by Tom King

It only took 28 years That's how long the NFL has been using replay. Now...finally...baseball will use the technology available to fix a glaring problem. When we watched games in grainy black & white or even color tv of a few years ago it was hard to argue with the calls of major league umpires. Even watching games in person most fans are too far away from the action to judge whether or not a call was right. Now with super slo-mo high def video its easy to see that major league umpires are not as infallible as they or the League would have you believe. When it only takes a game or two to go from the riches of the playoffs to being an also-ran, you know the owners wanted to fix the egregious blown calls that have been on display for all to see. So how will it work...well not perfectly...but one of the architects of the plan, tony La Russa thinks it will fix 90% of bad calls that happen. In addition to home runs the followin plays are also reviewable...fan interference, ground rule doubles, force plays (except on a double play at second base), tag plays, fair/foul in the OF, trap plays by outfielders, hit by pitch, touching a base(still requires an appeal), passing runners. The only problem is they have made the reviews another decision for the managers of the teams...at least for the first six innings. Each manager will have one challenge...they will get another if their first one is upheld...umpires can go to a video review on their own from the 7th inning on. I would think that few managers will use their challenge in the early innings...but here's the thing...you don't know which play will affect the outcome of the game...it could be a blown call in the first inning. I would imagine this system will be tweaked and eventually they will have another umpire in the booth that will decide which plays are reviewed without a challenge from the dugout...that's if the system is supposed to get the calls right...regardless of when they happen.

Speaking of rule changes...NFL commissoner Roger Goodell said that the league is considering getting rid of the extra point to keep the games livelier and moving along. What do you think about that?

The Badger men's basketball team is all of a sudden struggling on defense. Maybe they started believeing all the press they've been getting about how they are much more fun to watch now that they run and score more and forgot what has made Wisconsin basketball so successful over the years...hard nosed in your face defense. They try to right the ship on Wednesday night against Minnesota.

Its a tripleheader of high school basketball tonight on Foxsports radio AM1390 & FM 93.9 as Wausau West heads to Wausau East for a girls and boys DH. I'll have the call starting at 5:45. That will be followed by Stevens Point at DC Everest in boys hoops. And remember, you can always find the games as podcasts on Foxsports Wausau.com

Songs of the Day (from my I-pod)

Miles Away-Jackson Browne (1993) Bowne returned after a four year abcense with a collection of more personal songs after a couple of political albums. The LP was called "I'm Alive" 

Millworker-James Taylor (1979) from the "Flag" album comes this haunting tune that was also part of Studs Terkel's play 'Working".