When Major League Baseball decided to add replay to the game before the 2014 season, it appeared as if the game had been improved. But that hasn’t necessarily been the case, as even with replay the right call hasn’t always been made.
The Los Angeles Dodgers seem to have been victims of that this season, as calls haven’t seemed to go their way very often. That was the case on Monday against the Arizona Diamondback. The Dodgers were leading 4-2 in the sixth inning, when Diamondbacks rookie Yasmany Tomas hit a two-run homer to left. The play was called a homer on the field, and upheld by replay review despite the ball hitting a fan in the field of play. Whether or not the ball would have gone over the fence if it did not hit the fan is the question that’s up in the air:
According to Ken Gurnick of MLB.com, Dodgers manager Don Mattingly, who isn’t a fan of the current replay system, doesn’t believe the team lost the game because of that replay decision:
They said there was not enough evidence to overturn,” said Mattingly, who has tired of complaining about flaws he sees in the system. “We had the lead after that. We had the game back in our hands, up 6-4 with the back end of the bullpen. We had two outs and nobody on [in Arizona’s two-run seventh] and we can’t get out of it.”
After the game umpire Mike Winters defended the decision to rule Tomas’ ball a home run:
What we’re trying to rule on, even though we see the ball hit the fan, we’re trying to rule if it hadn’t hit the fan, what would have happened?” said crew chief Mike Winters. “[Third-base umpire Marty Foster]’s ruling on the field was the ball was going to leave the yard. When we went to replay, that’s what they came up with also.”