Ok, regardless of your opinions of the replay, I have a real problem with the procedure.
What's with having the umpires confer first? What the heck good is that supposed to do? One umpire sees it one way, but the umpire across the field is supposed to say...what? Gee I think you were wrong? Then what? The first umpire is supposed to just go along with it? He called it that way because that's what he thought happened. If he's wrong on the replay, ok fine, but seriously making the umpires debate it between themselves is just dumb.
Just go to the replay and be done with it.
mackman, I'm with you on this. Only time it could come into play would be with a ball on the ground or something similar.
Latest replay on the play at the plate, how would any other umpire have seen it well enough to express an opinion, but if he had, it would be that the runner beat the throw...he did, but the foot didn't touch the plate.
PU had it all the way, maybe slow down mechanics a little and not start a safe signal before coming with the hammer.
I don't think it really is a requirement. When I was at the Europe game yesterday and a close play at first was challenged the umpires did not get together before going to replay. Manager went straight to pu and walked to the replay official.
The discussion isn't an automatic, mack. According to the LL release, there are two ways a review of IR can be initiated:
1. The umpires get together after a close call, and after the discussion they decide they need to use replay.
2. The manager requests it after the call is made, regardless if the umpires got together or not.
I suppose the reason the umpires get together to discuss it beforehand is just in case the manager doesn't want to use his one chip. If he sees something and is sure the an umpire saw what he saw, why wouldn't he request that they get together first? If he can get the call overturned without the need for cashing in that chip, all the better.
I suppose you are correct, that it isn't technically required; still I think that it would be better form just to have the manager state he wants it reviewed rather than asking for a conference. Maybe partly its because I have to constantly deal with the newer umpires in my area that always want to 'confer' any time they have a close play and they want to check with me if what they called was ok. To me, this feels the same and I think its unnecessary.
I could possibly see something like a dropped ball; but if there was something like that the manager has always been able to ask the umpires to confer without resorting to a video challenge.
Here's what I want to know: On that missed play at first, where the guy was out by a step and then some, what did the six guys talk about? I mean, the other five saw it, and U1 may have even admitted he kicked it. But would they actually reverse it THEN?
Think of that can of worms, if they did.
If I was thoroughly convinced that I blew it, based upon what all my partners told me, and I felt 100% confident that IR would prove I was wrong, why wouldn't I change it? And how would that open a can of worms?
I have no idea what U1 was thinking. Aside from that call, he missed OBS and that checkswing/HBP. Between those, and muttering to himself, it wasn't pretty.
I don't know if whoever was the UIC tried to talk to him about it, or what transpired. It's U1's call to change in the end, as it's not a protest. The crew couldn't steamroll him on a judgment call, and it's up to U1 to ask the questions. Again, it would be interesting to know what was said.
Going back to the play that was discussed on the board, in the game between Panama and Canada where R3 was thrown out at home after he was successfully blocked from the plate by F2. That was the one where the PU started to come up with a safe call, and then changed it mid-stream to an out. Panama's manager went to the PU to ask for a review, and the PU immediately acquiesced and called all his partners together.
BOGUS! This is the PU's call all the way. There was nothing that any of the other umpires could offer that would have made a difference. The PU should've just told the manager, "I don't need to check with my partners, coach. I was positioned just fine for the call, and saw it the whole way." If the manager insisted on the video replay, then the PU should've gone directly to the booth.
You're right, mack. It's almost as if the umpires were told they had to get together every time, even though the procedures spelled out by LL HQ say it's not necessary.