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Saturday, June 23, 2018

Jack McKeon, MLB’s Oldest Manager, Supports Instant Replay

If you are a loyal LBS nut, you should know by now how we feel about instant replay in baseball.  Yes, the games are long enough as it is and yes, instant replay cuts back on some of the “human element” associated with the game.  That doesn’t mean we should not use technology that is readily available to us and is guaranteed to make the outcome of the game more accurate.

A lot of the opposition to instant replay comes from the old school generation.  Managers like Jim Leyland see no reason to review plays and even believe instant replays can be misleading.  Even Joe Torre has been doing his best to keep instant replay out of the game.

However, not all “old-timers” are opposed to the change.  Jack McKeon, the oldest manager in the MLB at age 80, believes the change can only improve the game.  After a controversial call that awarded Rafael Furcal a base hit on a ball that was caught cleanly Saturday night, Albert Pujols cranked a two-run homer that eventually became the difference in the game.  The play could not be reviewed, but replays showed the umpires blew the call.

“Like I told the umpires, you got four guys out here and four guys can’t see it. Maybe that’s another reason we ought to have instant replay,” McKeon said. “They gave me the courtesy of checking all four umpires, but to no avail. No question it was the difference in the ballgame. You’re not going to criticize the umpires or rip ’em because it’s a tough job. But, on the other hand, we got to get these plays right. We can’t have it consistently three and four times a week, the questionable stuff. Let’s go to instant replay. It’s tough when it comes down and it’s the deciding run of the ballgame.

“We get kicked out of the game, or the players perform poorly and don’t do the job, they’re sent out. But there’s no consequences if they continue to make bad calls. That’s a tough job. I’m not going to single out that guy (first base umpire Vic Carapazza). He had a bad night. We all make mistakes. But when you come down to losing ballgames and you’ve got three or four guys out there and all of them can’t see it, then we ought to go to instant replay.”

If an 80-year-old man is on board, shouldn’t we all be?

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