Monday, January 27, 2020

Umpires to Explain Rulings via Mic in 2020

In 2017, Tmac suggested five steps toward fixing Replay Review. First on the list was "give the Crew Chief a microphone," and now MLB has reportedly adopted the mic'd up umpire for the 2020 season.

With technology finding its way into Major League Baseball through an automated strike zone test in Spring Training, it's high time that the league turns its attention to communication and with the new MLBUA-MLB CBA, that time is now.

Outfitting MLB umpires with microphones to explain Replay Review decisions (specifically the difference between "Confirmed" and "Stands" outcomes) as well as providing umpires with a way to explain complex rulings not easily digested by fans and media, such as interference, obstruction, and infield fly calls, will allow the baseball community to do something it has rarely had the opportunity to do before: hear umpires speak for themselves.
Related PostTmac's Teachable Moments - Let's Fix Replay (1/19/17).

Baseball's move to mic its officials follows sports such as football and hockey, and similarly matches MLB's Japanese counterpart, the Nippon Professional Baseball Organization, which has long afforded umpires in Japan the opportunity to explain rules and announce tough calls to the audience through its traditional microphone set-up on the warning-track wall behind home plate, which is patched directly into the public address system.

Video as follows:

Alternate Link: MLB Umpires to Explain Calls via Microphone in 2020 (CCS)


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