MLB Is Discussing A 30-Second Limit For Managers To Decide On Replay Challenges
The war against dead time in Major League Baseball games rages on, as this is the latest idea that the league has come up with to eliminate the action-killers within the game.
Sources told ESPN that MLB wants a 30-second time limit for managers to decide whether or not to challenge an umpire’s call and is currently discussing that limit, along with other possible changes to replay, with both the players’ and umpires’ unions.
The current rules say that, in most cases, managers must “immediately” inform umpires if they want to challenge a call. But in reality, there are often long delays as managers often wait for advice from their internal replay assistants before challenging.
I read the original headline quickly, and I thought that the rule change was going to be the league limiting how long the reviews can actually last for. I’m fine with what the actual proposed rule change would be, though. I mean, teams literally have people whose only job is to stare at the monitor and then yell up the tunnel to the manager or bench coach on whether or not the manager should challenge. If the team employee is going to be limited to 30 seconds to determine whether or not the team should burn a challenge on a particular play, then I think 30-45 seconds is plenty of time to limit the umpires to review the replay and make an official call.
That was one of my ideas that I threw out there last year — put a time limit on replay challenges. We’re all sitting at home, watching the same shit that they’re seeing, and screaming at our TVs, either “He’s fucking out!” or “That was a fucking home run!” or “He got his fucking hand on the bag before the tag!” If we can determine that from our couches within 15 seconds while we’re 8 beers deep, then a major league umpire shouldn’t need more than 45 seconds to do the same. Some of these replay challenges last up to four minutes or longer, and it’s preposterous. Then the pitcher has to burn some bullets to throw warmup pitches to stay loose. It’s just not necessary.
If you’re gonna limit the managers to 30 seconds to make a decision on whether or not to challenge a play, then you should also limit the umpires to 30-ish seconds to make the call. And I know — there will be plenty of fans who will say, take as long as you need to get the call right. It’s a fair point. But again, do you, the viewer at home, need more than 30-45 seconds to see the replay on TV to be able to determine what the correct call is? No. Case closed.