May 20, 2022

The Westfield Voice

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Sports From Carlin’s Couch

3 min read

You know, every time I sit behind my desk and begin these articles, one thing comes to mind. How are there so many stupid people getting paid more than me? Now, of course, I am referring to the rapid degradation of American sports teams and their coaching staffs, particularly with the MLB coaches.

So, in recent news, Major League Baseball has provided coaches the ability to “challenge” umpire calls… What? When the heck did this game become the NFL? I mean besides the sissificiation of all American sports, what else does baseball have in common with football?

Well, it would seem that a common factor is the sub-par referee system that each sport has to offer. I guess the umpires have gotten so awful over the years that players and coaches have demanded a way to review their calls.

I mean, thank god, because maybe we wouldn’t have that interference call from last year’s World Series. I do have a concern over the intelligence level of coaches and how they were presented with this new rule.

It was April 20; the Red Sox had come back from 5-0 deficit in the first seven innings at the plate. The issue came up at the last inning when the bases were loaded and a pinch hitter came up to bat for the Sox. The ball was hit right into the Orioles left fielder’s glove, who whipped the ball past both the third baseman and catcher allowing Pedroia, who previously tagged up, to make his way to home for the win.

Orioles’ manager Buck Showalter, who had ALREADY benefited from an umpire review, tried pressing his luck again by attempting to challenge the call on the field. Well the joke and shame was on Showalter who was reminded that you CANNOT challenge a tag up call, which he commented “you can’t appeal a tag. Go figure. They’ve got some really strange rules. That will change, too, going forward.”

The entire situation should have been avoided. In Fenway, before the replay system, Any ball that hits the top of the Green Monster and bounces back on to the field is a home run. However, with the new replay system, Pedroia’s home run was called back to a double. Let me talk about for a brief moment the issue that I see in the very near future.

As it currently reads, the challenge rule says that managers will have the ability to challenge one play up to the seventh inning and if they win their challenges, they may continue to use them. However if a manger loses their challenge, they lose the ability to challenge them.

After the seventh inning, the umpires will have the sole ability to decide if a play should be reviewed (of course managers have the ability to put the idea in the umpires heads).

Now the problem is exactly what Showalter said, “That will change, too, going forward.” Now will it really? I mean let’s be honest here, baseball has relatively been the same since its birth in Coopersville.

How, if at all, do coaches and managers feel they can now radically change the game of baseball because they feel “cheated” in the end all these rules will just make players act like soccer players and cry and whine over the slightest physical exertion possible.

 

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