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Article:Instant Replay: Can't This Wait Until August?

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I'm not here to debate whether or not instant replay in baseball is a good thing. Frankly, it doesn't really bother me if they have replay or not. Sure, when they plan on implementing it this Thursday, the purists may be unhappy.

"The human element is part of the game," they'll say.

Maybe so, but what if that human element causes your team to miss out on the playoffs because the crew chief thought to rule in favor of a ground rule double rather than a home run.

Either way, both sides, for and against, have valid arguments when talking about instant replay.

But I'm not here to talk about that.

My only concern with this, and I think it's a big one that isn't being talked about, is that they plan to implement the system in the middle of the season. What? I thought changing rules mid-way was something reserved for when you were losing a game you and your brothers created in the backyard.

At the beginning of the season, MLB didn't have instant replay. But then there were a few weeks in May where it seemed every home run was being debated, and the issue was brought to the forefront. It seemed like instant replay was inevitable, and that it would soon be implemented in baseball. But when I first heard discussions about this, I thought for sure it would be something voted on during the Winter Meetings.

Not during the actual season itself.

Think about it. What if for 8 weeks the NFL decided not to have instant replay, but then midway through the season they changed their mind? To me, that would jeopardize the whole integrity of that season. You can't play two halves of a season with a different set of rules.

What if the NBA decided in March to change the shot clock from 24 to 35? What if 4 months into the season the NHL eliminated their icing rule. What if your fantasy football league decided to give a point per receptions this year, only you didn't start awarding them until week 10?

Yeah, these things are bound to happen much more frequently than there will be a need to look at the replay machine in baseball. But changing the rules mid-season still seems questionable to me.

If only there was a way to review that decision.

You can view more of this author's work at www.thebuckychannel.com.

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