21st Century Paging Major League Baseball

Baseball has a problem and it needs to be addressed immediately.

I know among baseball people this is unpopular, but I don’t care about baseball people right now. I know human error has and always will be apart of the game, but sometimes, humans really screw up.

Even with the limited use of instant replay that baseball currently uses, the umpires are getting calls wrong. Not only are the umps getting them wrong, they are terribly wrong; and Bud Selig seems happier than a pig in slop about this.

Selig, or “Captain Reaction” as I sometimes refer to him as, has tried his hardest to keep the use of technology out of baseball.

But give Selig some credit; he has talked to baseball people about the issue. You know these people; they share the same views as the Commissioner.

“The more baseball people I talk to, there is a lot of trepidation, and I think their trepidation is fair,” Selig told reporters. “Affecting the game on the field is not something I really want to do.”

Fair points, but baseball has made on the field changes in the past. Lowering the mound following Bob Gibson’s 1968 season? Adding teeth to their steroid policy after allowing the problem to run rampant for years, only after Jose Canseco decided he needed some money. I’m just saying that change isn’t a bad thing.

For change to happen, Selig has to open up his circle and not just talk strictly to baseball people. He must talk to other commissioners like Roger Goddell of the NFL, whose league uses replay on a challenge system for a ton of calls. How about Gary Bettman of the NHL whose league uses replay for goal calls, high sticks on goals and for determining suspensions. Or possibly David Stern of the NBA who’s league uses it for buzzer beaters or calling a made shot a two or three pointer.

“I think my position is clear,” Selig told the New York Times. “This is a game of pace, I’m worried about that.”

Excuse me? I love baseball, but I think I saw a snail roll by a baseball game once and comment on how slow the game was going. What would take more time? A replay official paging the on-field umps to take a second look, or a manager getting out of the dugout and in the face of one of the umpires?

The replay might take less time than Lou Piniella kicking his hat around the diamond. It would just be far less entertaining.

Sports fans are calling for Selig to react to the poor umpiring. Come on Captain Reaction…React! It’s what you’re best at.

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