Did Brandon Phillips & Reds Use Instant Replay As A Stall Tactic?
The instant replay system instituted by major league baseball is still in its infancy and like any other new system there are problems and bugs that need to be worked out. The number one issue right now seems to be the definition of what completes a catch – a common issue with the National Football League – but in MLB it had seemed that the catch and transfer were two separate events. Last nights game between the Tampa Bay Rays and Cincinnati Reds revealed another possible issue using instant replay as a way to disrupt a pitchers timing.
Last night Rays lefty David Price entered the ninth inning at 107 pitches and was looking to set the Reds down in order and walk away with the complete game shutout.
Reds second baseman lead off the inning and if he could get on base it would bring Joey Votto to the plate representing the tying run.
Price’s second pitch landed in the dirt in the general area of Phillips hind leg but was nowhere close to hitting in but this didn’t stop him from trying to sell home plate umpire that he had been hit.
The first batter of the inning was Reds second baseman Brandon Phillips and Price’s second pitch was in the dirt and clearly did not hit Phillips but he began to hobble around home plate as if it had.
Phillips hobbling around resulted in Reds Manager Bryan Price requesting that home plate umpire D.J. Reyburn have the play examined by instant replay to verify whether Phillips had been hit by the pitch.
The call was upheld that he didn’t get hit by the pitch but there was nearly a two-minute delay. Whether or not the delay affected Price is unknown but the question can be asked as to whether umpires need to use better discretion on whether or not they feel the request for a replay is warranted or whether it’s an act of gamesmanship by the opposition.