OK, I have been a proponent for instant replay in major league baseball for years now. I don’t understand why people are so against technology if it is available and useful. The debate is raging right now in the sports world after what seems to be one of the biggest missed calls of all time. It is tough for me to say that since for once, a call went the Braves way and they capitalized on it.
The call came in the 19th inning of the Atlanta Braves vs. the Pittsburgh Pirates game on Tuesday night. This was the longest game (in time) for both teams and the call came just a few minutes before 2 am. Both teams were depleted of position players and only had down a couple of pitchers left who could play. For that reason, Braves relief pitcher Scott Proctor was forced to hit in the 19th inning with 1 out and men on third and second bases. Proctor made contact and the ball was a routine hit to the third basemen. He fielded the ball and made a good throw to home clearing ahead of the runner. The catcher seemed to apply the tag but Lugo (Braves runner) was called safe.
I am happy for the result since I am a diehard Braves fan, but I am upset that a call so obvious was missed. The Pirates have filed a complaint with MLB but I don’t think anything will be changed. This helps the Braves in the standings and hurts the Pirates, but that is part of the way the league works. I know that umpire Jerry Meals meant to make the correct call but he didn’t. Even though he had some questionable balls and strike calls earlier in the night, I know he is an honorable umpire.
Here is yet another reason why MLB needs to institute instant replay. They are currently debating using it for homeruns and fair/foul balls but that is it. I think they should institute it for everything but balls and strikes. Maybe we can avoid more games like this in the future.
In the meantime, Go Braves!