Replay For Balls And Strikes, Good Or Bad For Baseball?

by Ryan Macklin | Posted on Thursday, August 15th, 2013
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Instant Replay

Deadspin has suggested that MLB has considered using instant replay for calls that aren’t balls or strikes. The question becomes, is this good or bad for baseball? I will take an objective approach to this question, although it will be tough for me since I am a baseball purist.

Let me begin with a quote. “Baseball is only a game. True. And the grand canyon is only a hole in Arizona.” George Will. Baseball is uniquely different from all the other major American sports in so many aspects. But again, I must be objective. The casual fan would argue that instant replay for balls and strikes would be good for baseball in that instant replay would eliminate human error. this is also true. Baseball purists would argue that human error has been a part of this game since its creation and would take away from the romance of the game.

True as well and both are valid points. So, how do we tackle the question of whether or not instant replay is good or bad for the game. I think it would be good for the casual fan, but not for the baseball fanatics. Instant replay, while good for the other major American sports, would only push baseball to be more like these sports and should stay that way. so, having said that, instant replay would be detrimental to the game of baseball that I and so many of us fell in love with. On the flip side, instant replay would drastically impact the state of the game.

It would take human error away and every game would, in theory, make every game called perfectly. Well, then that leaves the answer up to us, the casual fan and the baseball purist. Being a purist, I say it’s bad for the game. I want to see the game called as accurately as humanly possible, but baseball is a game of flaws and will never be perfect, just the way it was meant to be.

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Ryan Macklin
About the Author

Ryan Macklin is a 33 year old baseball fanatic born in Philadelphia and raised in rural North Carolina. Ryan has followed baseball as far back as he can remember and is somewhat of a baseball historian obsessed with statistics. Follow Ryan on Twitter @rynmckln12.

  • Redwolf

    bad leave it alone ….. it aint broken….

  • why don’t we put transmitters in the players shoes and in the ball and receivers in the bases How boring no way leave the game alone and get rid of the Dh.

    • Mattie Ice

      Come on now…we should get rid of the playoffs too then right? They only started 4 years before AL adopted the DH and NL would have passed the dh rule in 80 if phillies owner wasn’t out fishing. Just like with every other change that has occurred with baseball, the teams/owners have to have majority vote. They did that with dh, with playoffs and now replay. While I don’t agree with the replay, as I’m with Ryan that the human element separates baseball, I’m also sure that people disagreed with the playoff system in 69 and look what it’s done for the sport. Really no way of knowing how this will help or hurt baseball until years to come. The old baseball fans won’t stop watching bc of replay, but we may pick up some lifelong fans going forward bc of it too….and that may need to be what baseball needs considering less and less of our youth are playing baseball….time will tell I guess

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