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A Case for Replay

by LS Murphy

Cardinals fans know how valuable instant replay could have been back in the 80s. After all, this little technology might have saved a World Series championship in 1985.

Every fan knows the story of Don Denkinger's horrible call in game 6 of the '85 series. Our beloved Redbirds melted and lost the series in game 7. As much as we all blame Denkinger, it wasn't the last call of the game. It wasn't the deciding factor. The boys could have won game 7. But they let that call get to them and lost the series. If they had one it, Denkinger wouldn't be such a bad name in these parts. Instead, he's as infamous as Mrs. O'Leary's cow or, even worse, Bartman is in Chicago.

I've never been a proponent of instant replay. The humanity of the umpires is what makes this game great.

Last night changed my mind.

Armando Galarraga threw a perfect game last night. We all know it. He knows it. But the record books won't reflect it. Now, at least in Detroit, Jim Joyce will be the Tigers' Don Denkinger.

If only there was instant replay. If only.

The technology available now is quite different than in 1985. Okay, it's incredibly different. Instant replay can be implemented now without slowing down the game too much. If it's done right, it won't slow the game down at all.

There are several ways to do this. First, managers can only have one challenge a game. They can't challenge balls or strikes. Second, hire another umpire to be in the booth. He can review the disputed call while the manager argues and have a decision ready. Third, one word: iPhone. I think everyone in this country has an iPhone/Blackberry/PalmPre or some other phone that can get e-mail. The umpire in the booth can e-mail pictures of the play in question then the umpires on the field can make a snap decision.

Regardless of how it happens, Jim Joyce made the case for instant replay last night. He admitted he blew the call. It's up to Major League Baseball to rectify the situation.

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Cardinals Mix blog featured writers LS Murphy,Brian F. Logush
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