Oakland Athletics manager Bob Melvin can be counted as a supporter of Major League Baseball’s approval this week of an expanded instant replay system that will include managerial challenges.
New rules approved (h/t MLB.com) Thursday allow managers to challenge one call per game in the first six innings, limited to certain reviewable calls that include tag plays at bases, force plays, fair or foul calls in the outfield, hit by pitch rulings and whether plays in the outfield are a trap or a catch.
If a manager is successful with his challenge, he will receive a second one that he can use within the first six innings. From the seventh inning on, replays will be triggered by the crew chief.
“Like anything new, you feel it out and see how it plays out,” Melvin told CSNBayArea.com. “Do you go out and argue? Do you want for confirmation from the bench (on whether to challenge)? Do you use the challenge now or save it for later? A lot of things … it’s wait and see how it plays out. Ultimately, I think it’s good for the game.”
San Francisco Giants manager Bruce Bochy is also a fan of the new system.
“I think it’s great,” Bochy told the Associated Press. “It’s about getting it right.”
The important thing to realize about replay is that it’s not designed to get every call right and this is something fans will have to accept. If that were the goal, then just about everything would be reviewable and it wouldn’t take a challenge from the dugout to trigger one.
Former A’s manager Tony La Russa, now an MLB executive who served on the replay committee, admitted as much.
“We’re really going for the dramatic miss, not all misses,” La Russa said. “This is a challenge for a game-changing play that goes against you and now you can correct it.”