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Instant Replay

Expansion of instant replay in Major League Baseball has been a hotly


debated topic over the past few years. With the start of the 2014 MLB season,
new rules regarding replays were introduced to the game, allowing for
managers to make challenges concerning the most controversial calls. With
these new additions to the rulebook, however, a new controversy has arisen.
Although instant replay can perhaps eliminate missed and blown calls, it also
brings new topics of debate to the table. Allowing for instant replay is a
mistake because of baseballs human nature, the time of each game, and its
history.
Perhaps the most interesting and appealing component to baseball is the
aspect of human nature. Umpires, or impartial arbiters as Harvard graduate
Julian Atehortua puts it, are simply human and although their job is to fairly
call and score the game, they will make errors. Atehortua continues, declaring
that [i]nsant replay, at its heart, undermines the integrity of the sport [a
sport] controlled by human nature. Furthermore, baseball will always be a
game of inches. Fair or foul, safe or out, there are an infinite number of plays
that can be too close to call. Therefore, and by adding instant replay to the
game, so too will baseballs honesty and truth be eradicated.
Another aspect of baseball that goes against instant replay is time. In his
article entitled, Lets Re-Play Ball, Thomas Gaudett recognizes that
baseball is already incredibly long, with an average time of almost three
hours. Nobody wants games to last longer, and many are justifiably concerned
that instant replay may add more time to the length of the game. Adding
instant replay will consequently add minutes upon minutes of review. With
fans, players, and those watching at home already at odds with the games
length, adding more time may contribute to a loss of interest.
Finally, by adding instant replay to Americas past time, a shadow will be
cast upon baseballs controversial past. Seth Swirsky, writer for the Huffington
Post, indicates that [c]ontroversy - without the resolution provided by the
latest technology -- helps enshrine the folklore of the game. It engenders the
passion of the game decades after the actual play took place. Instant Replay
would severely water down that experience. After all, part of the fun of the
game is recalling and debating the closest and most controversial moments in
baseball history. Did Babe Ruth really call his shot in the 1932 World Series?
Should interference have been called on the Jeffrey Maier Play - Derek
Jeters controversial Home Run in the 96 playoffs? Instant replay would
permanently eliminate folklore and debate from baseballs future.