MLB Instant Replay Funding Approved by Teams' Owners

Friday, 15 Nov 2013 02:41 PM

By Clyde Hughes

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Major League Baseball, one of the last popular professional sports to embrace instant replay, is about to incorporate it into the game.

MLB owners unanimously approved funding on Thursday to expand instant replay, according to MLB.com. The plan must receive final approval at January's owner's meeting, by the Major League Baseball Players Association, and by the World Umpires Association.

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"We made a gigantic move today, and I'm very pleased about that," Major League Baseball's commissioner Bud Selig said on Thursday. "I think we're quite far along. The bottom line is, we're moving forward on replay. People spoke very emotionally about it. Clubs are very excited about it. Unless there's something I'm missing right now, we're going to have replay in 2014."

Selig and other officials said there are issues that still have to be hammered out, such as the number of challenges a manager will receive. In the National Football League, for example, coaches have two challenges. If they use both and are correct both times in the first half of the game, they get another challenge later in the game. If they are wrong, they lose a time out.

MLB chief operating officer Rob Manfred told MLB.com one change has already been made from the blueprint that was unveiled at August's owner's meeting that gave managers one set of challenges for the entire game.

The NFL first used instant replay in 1986, the National Hockey League in 1991, the National Basketball Association in 2002, and Wimbledon in 2006, according to The Associated Press. The Little League World Series started using instant replay in 2008. 

MLB started using replay on a limited basis in August 2008 to determine home run disputes. The new rules would make virtually every decision except for balls and strikes up for review.

One of the plays that helped spur the call for more instant replay in MLB was a blown call by umpire Jim Joyce at first base in 2010 that cost Detroit Tigers pitcher Armando Galarraga a perfect game.

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