I tried to think of something more clever to title this piece but it just wasn't coming, so you get what I'm really thinking.
In case you missed it espn.com reported today that the umpires are now say that instant replay in Major League Baseball is imminent. There has already been talk of experimenting with it in the Arizona Fall League, so the writing is clearly on the wall here. http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/news/story?id=3418530
Now, I wouln't call myself a baseball purist by any means, but I can't help but think that this is the worst idea since Greedo shooting first. Everyone is saying (in stupid meathead voice) "Why not!?!? Football has it, and it works great." Does it? Really? Then why did football abolish replay all together once after implimenting it in 1986? Cuz it was problematic and dragged games on longer than the commercials did already. And if it's so great in football, why is its continued existence debated during every offseason? The answer is because it's not so great. It works, barely, because in football the number of close, overturnable calls is relatively few. In baseball almost every call is a bang-bang play. Almost every tag play is debatable. I'd bet 4 out of every 5 plays at first base are within a step or less. Not to mention balls and strikes, trapped balls, fair or foul balls, check swings, and of course, the plays that started this whole debate home-run balls (at Yankee Stadium). Can you imagine what the baseball haters, who already bitch about baseball "taking sooooo long", would have to say when you stop the game 2 or 3 times to go to the replay just to find out that a guy had been correctly called out at first base?
Now I know that they are only talking about implimenting this for home-run balls, but this is your text book "slippery slope." All it's gonna take is for one "missed" call at 2nd base or on a foul ball in some Yankee playoff game to have the Jay Mariottis of the world screaming about what a travesty this is. About how baseball has the technology to get the call right, why aren't they using it. Can you imagine how different last year's postseason would have looked if there had been repaly available for that Matt Holiday slide into the plate?
Me neither, because that play was SO close that if you show it to 100 people, you'll probably get 50 safe and 50 out calls. (I personally think he was safe, and I was rooting for the Padres.)
If you think I'm crazy about all of this, go to that espn.com article and look at the poll results. 89.4% of the responders favor some form of instant replay in baseball. Of those 89.4%, 22% favor replay on ALL CLOSE CALLS!!! That is complete fucking insanity.
All I'm saying is that this could open up a can of worms that NOBODY except for the screaming heads on TV, and maybe Don Denkinger, would really want to see opened. The umpires make the right call so often that all replay will do is prove how fucking good they really are, and give the haters more ammo. I can't have that, especially after Moongoose McQueen just came over from the dark side. I can't justify introducing replay into the equation EVER. Even if it would have taken that "homer" away from that little prick Jeffrey Maier.