January 18, 2014 1:15 AM
In case you missed it, here are all the details on the replay rules.
This one caught my eye:
Once the manager has exhausted his ability to challenge plays during the game and after the beginning of the seventh inning, the crew chief may choose to invoke instant replay on any reviewable call. In that circumstance, the crew chief is not obligated to invoke instant replay if requested by the manager.
It's unclear whether the umps can themselves request a review prior to the seventh inning, or if they must wait for a manager to request it. That would seem to need some clarification (although maybe the assumption is that the umps would never do that on their own).
The key thing is that they are compelled to review a play as long as a manager has his challenge left and it's before the seventh inning. After that point, the umps are not compelled to do what the manager asks, but clearly the manager could still ask for a review, and it could still be granted. And the umps could make the call themselves (without a request) at that point.
Using the seventh inning as a cut-off point seems sort of arbitrary. I suppose the fear is that managers might use frivolous challenges to allow a reliever more time to warm up or something like that. But blown calls (or potentially blown calls) are just as likely in the ninth as any other time. And if the game is on the line, replay review is just as important then as ever.
And I wonder about extra-inning games. Shouldn't the challenges reset at some point?
Of course, what I don't like about these new rules is that the umps are ever forced to do something. It would make more sense to me if these late-inning rules were actually always the rules. But it's easy to see that the managers would object to taking away their right to force something. That's actually a small victory for the managers, who throughout the history of the game have never actually been able to force an ump to do anything.
In fact, that may be the defining element of this rule change. The dynamic between umps and managers is modified, to a degree yet to be determined (albeit probably pretty subtle).
Sadly, that little bit of control may actually reduce the number of times we get to see Gardy throw his hat and kick dirt and chew out an ump. I guess there will always be balls and strikes to argue over... (Somewhere, Lou Piniella is spinning in his grave. What? Still alive? OK, he'll be spinning in his chair in a broadcast booth somewhere.)
Two other things look interesting:
Clubs will now have the right to show replays of all close plays on its ballpark scoreboard, regardless of whether the play is reviewed.
This will surely be the greatest gain in the rule change for fans in the stands. It's long overdue, and I'm convinced that the only reason the old policy was ever adopted in the first place was as a face-saving measure for the umpires. I never bought the line that teams don't want to rile up the fans. We've always known that that's exactly what teams want to do.
The question remains whether they will show replays which will go against the home team. I hope they always show them.
No monitors or additional electronic equipment will be permitted in the dugout.
When, oh, when will MLB get over this? Technology really isn't the enemy. These are modern tools. Why forbid their use? It really makes no sense.
This rule change is, in itself, an admission that technology is now a friend of the game. It's time to let the managers and coaches watch the replays whenever and however they want to for decision-making. (It's probably fueled by fears about stealing signs or something crazy like that.)
But, no, instead we get this anachronism:
To determine whether to challenge a play, personnel in the dugout will be permitted to communicate with a video specialist in the clubhouse who has access to the same video that is available to replay officials. This communication will occur via the dugout phone.
"Yeah, Gardy, that guy was safe. Go challenge."
OK, it's an anachronism, but what a great gig. Hey, Dave St. Peter! I want this job!
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This page was last modified on January 18, 2014.
"You talk about the magic, the aura, but what really makes a stadium is the fans. Concrete doesn't talk back to you. Chairs don't talk back to you. It's the people who are there, day in, day out, that makes the place magic."
– Bernie Williams
Explore the Site
Here are 50 images chosen randomly from the 3042 found on this site. Click the image to be taken to the original post. A new list is created every 10 minutes.
Looking back toward First Avenue
This is the plaza as viewed from the A ramp.
A timeline of design and construction of the ballpark. (Click to enlarge. Photo by Tyler Wycoff)
This concourse, the uppermost, was built on top of the now-hidden old concourse during the 70s renovation.
Here is where the signature art (original Twins logo) will be placed.
A place to sit (does it look like a pitcher's mound to you?)
Bike parking available along Second Avenue
Here's the entrance from the seating bowl.
This looks south and shows the track configuration for Northstar. The platform shown is just a placeholder. To the best of my knowledge, concept drawings for this platform have not been released. Keep in mind, this is NOT part of the ballpark project. It is completely separate.
The east wall of the building looks like it will be the first part completed. These are probably supports for the plaza, and they hug the very edge of the site.
Now looking north, the tracks emerge from beneath Seventh Street as freight tracks only. The Northstar line ends at the northwest corner of the ballpark. One day, however, you can bet that other passenger trains will approach from the southwest metro on these tracks -- if our legislators are smart and persistent, that is.
This is the left field pavilion in the original concept model. The restaurant pictured to its right has been moved, and the seating area has been extended at least one full section toward center.
Nicely-cushioned seats, lots of room, great sightlines
Concept drawing of Coomer gate (click to enlarge)
LRT throngs after the game
Dugout Box and Champion's Club sections are sequestered by separate moats
A new restaurant going in at Fifth Street and Second Avenue
View from the batter's eye seats
This view looks up Fifth Street toward downtown and shows how the LRT tracks sort of snuggle up to the ballpark.
The Northstar stop has a name.
Home Plate Terrace -- really great seats; maybe my personal, budget-based favorite
The first completed mural
A seating bowl comes into focus. Note that the netting has been installed on the foul pole. (Field Box)
And another angle looking at the overhang area of the right field pavilion. This looks to me like a great area to watch a game.
The glorious Gate 34
This is what will count as a knothole (actually, it's a gated entrance)
Lots of people are doing it.
Bassett Creek's path through the ballpark site (Source: Minneapolis Public Library)
A little ground's crew action in the first inning the other night.
A look at Gate 34.
Items promoting the Twins 2014 All-Star Game bid. I got to bring one of these buckets home, and Noah got his first-ever taste of Cracker Jacks.
BPM - Ballpark Magic
BRT - Bus Rapid Transit
DSP - Dave St. Peter
FSE - Full Season Equivalent
FYS - Fake Yankee Stadium (see also: NYS)
HERC - Hennepin Energy Resource Company (aka the Garbage Burner)
HPB - Home Plate Box
HRP - Home Run Porch
LC - Legends Club
LRT - Light Rail Transit
MBA - Minnesota Ballpark Authority (will own Target Field)
MOA - Mall of America
MSFC - Minnesota Sports Facilities Commission (owns the Metrodome)
NYS - New Yankee Stadium
SRO - Standing Room Only
STH - Season Ticket Holder
TCFBS - TCF Bank Stadium
TF - Target Field
Selected Bibliography - Analysis
First Edition (1992)
Second Edition (2006)
Selected Bibliography - Surveys
Second Edition (1987)
Not a "Third Edition" exactly,
but it replaced the above title
(2000, large coffee table)
Original edition (2000, round)
Revised edition (2006, round)
(2001, medium coffee table)
(2002, small coffee table)
(2003, medium coffee table)
(2004, very large coffee table)
(2006, very large coffee table)
Combines the previous two titles
(2007, medium coffee table)
Selected Bibliography - Nostalgia
Book and six ballpark miniatures