Friday, November 9, 2012

Instant Replay Series: Check Swing

My next installment on how my proposal for implementing instant replay could have impacted the postseason focuses on the deciding Game 5 of the NLDS series between the St. Louis Cardinals and the Washington Nationals.

The Nats had jumped to an early six run lead, but the Cardinals kept chipping away at it. By the 9th inning, they had cut the deficit to 7-5.  But after a leadoff double, they had two quick outs and it did not look they would have another miracle comeback like in Game 6 of the 2011 World Series.  But a walk put the tying run on base and the Redbirds faithful still had some hope.  With a 1-2 count on David Freese, Drew Storen threw a slider just off the plate.  Freese started to offer at it and then held up.  Or did he?

Friday, November 2, 2012

Instant Replay Series: Infield Fly call in wildcard game

The first controversial play of this postseason, was in the very first wildcard game between the Cardinals and the Braves.   Let me refresh your memory:  In the bottom of the 8th inning, the Braves were down 6-3 but rallying.  They had runners on 1st and 2nd with only 1 out and Andrelton Simmons at bat, with Brian McCann on deck.  Simmons hit a bloop/pop fly into shallow left field.  Cardinal shortstop Pete Kozma sprinted back for it and looked like he was under it, and at the last second he peeled off, presumably to let Matt Holliday take it.  But Holliday never took charge and it fell untouched, as the Braves runners scrambled to advance safely to their next base.  But in the midst of all this, an infield fly was called, and Simmons was declared out.  The short version of what ensued was lots of arguing, Braves fans showing their displeasure by littering the field with anything they could throw, a long delay, Atlanta playing the game under protest, the ruling being upheld and the Cardinals advanced to the LDS, and went on to win the World Series (ok, so maybe the last part may not have happened this year).  Here is the video:
The Braves thought that the infield fly should not have been called, and the bases should have been loaded with only one out.  And it left a bad taste in people's mouths on the way future Hall of Famer Chipper Jones' career ended. How could my instant replay proposal have been applied here?