More replay expected to be introduced next season
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Baseball fans can look forward to more use of video replays next season, Major League Baseball executive Joe Torre said on Tuesday.
Questionable home runs are now subject to video review by umpires, but former major league manager Torre said other plays would become subject to replay review.
Torre, now MLB's executive vice president for baseball operations, has been involved on a sub-committee with Atlanta Braves president John Schuerholz and former manager Tony La Russa on expanding video replay.
"We want to improve what we've done with the home run replay and we're pretty confident we'll have it in place for 2014," Torre told reporters.
An agreement already in place with the Players Association would allow MLB to institute replay to determine fair/foul calls on balls hit down the baselines and whether a ball has been caught cleanly or trapped.
Torre said one aspect of expanding replay would be to decide on "the trigger" for review of a play. Currently, umpires decide whether to review a home run call, but expanded replay could require a manager to use one of a limited number of challenges.
While fans and commentators often bemoan the "missed" calls that can crop up in a game of close plays, Torre said the goal was not to eliminate every possible mistake on the field.
"We want to stay away from having a knee jerk reaction," Torre said. "Some people have asked that we get every play right.
"But how much replay do we want? If you start from the first inning to the ninth inning you might have to time the game with a calendar.
"We have a game with flow, we have a rhythm to it."
Commissioner Bud Selig said he does not like to tinker too much with the game, but recognized that improvements could be made.
"I'm very pleased with what they've done," Selig said about the introduction of replay. "I'm a traditionalist at heart. We have to be careful not to affect the pace of the game."
Selig said he could foresee changes "that are constructive and fit in with the game" but reminded the reporters that "life isn't perfect, the sport isn't perfect, but we live with it and its been great."
(Editing by Greg Stutchbury)