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Tuesday, August 07, 2012

Perry: ‘That’s blinkin’ fertilizer’: Vin Scully reads lips

Fertilizer F-Bombs…

You need only watch, oh, 30 seconds of a Dodgers broadcast to realize that Vin Scully’s unsurpassed brilliance in the booth hasn’t dimmed with age. No broadcaster is better at describing the action in dulcet tones, bridging gaps in action with stories and, when appropriate, letting the game do the talking. But any baseball fan knows all of this.

What you may not know about Mr. Vin Scully is that he’s also an accomplished lip-reader, especially when it comes to a manager having a conniption. Witness Scully’s inspired translation of the selected works of Jim Tracy ...

Repoz Posted: August 07, 2012 at 10:20 AM | 34 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: dodgers, rockies

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Statements posted here are those of our readers and do not represent the BaseballThinkFactory. Names are provided by the poster and are not verified. We ask that posters follow our submission policy. Please report any inappropriate comments.

   1. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: August 07, 2012 at 10:55 AM (#4202189)
The ball was clearly trapped.
   2. phredbird Posted: August 07, 2012 at 11:04 AM (#4202196)
ball definitely bounces up into the glove, but sometimes it looks like it does so off the lip of the webbing. doesn't that make it a catch? that was a tough call.
   3. Al Peterson Posted: August 07, 2012 at 11:10 AM (#4202202)
Scully is awesome...toward the end of the clip: "Jim's gone so he is spending house money now." How many of the announcers out there would add a sentence like that? Locally I know the O's announcers would be busy plugging the post-game show or pleading with people to come out to the Yard.
   4. Dale Sams Posted: August 07, 2012 at 11:20 AM (#4202206)
"No blooody way!"...heh..
   5. valuearbitrageur Posted: August 07, 2012 at 11:32 AM (#4202212)
"We have all this technology and they don't use it because they say it would delay the game. Well, what was that we just saw?"
   6. Esoteric Posted: August 07, 2012 at 11:49 AM (#4202230)
Gotta love Vin. Everything about this is wonderful.
   7. asinwreck Posted: August 07, 2012 at 11:53 AM (#4202236)
Never saw fertilizer blink.
   8. JE (Jason) Posted: August 07, 2012 at 11:57 AM (#4202242)
The ball was clearly trapped.

Scully disagreed and I think he was right. That's tough to overturn.
   9. Dan Posted: August 07, 2012 at 12:14 PM (#4202260)
Scully also used this event as an opportunity to advocate the use of replay. He more or less said, "we have all of this amazing technology now to replay this from multiple angles in slow motion and zoom in on it, but we don't avail ourselves of the technology to improve the game." And then he went on to mention that the argument that it would take more time makes no sense when you see how much time was already spent here watching each manager argue with the umpires and watching the umpires confer over the call on the field.
   10. Lassus Posted: August 07, 2012 at 12:21 PM (#4202265)
And then he went on to mention that the argument that it would take more time makes no sense when you see how much time was already spent here watching each manager argue with the umpires and watching the umpires confer over the call on the field.

Which, unfortunately, doesn't take into account the number of calls per game that will be shouted on to be reviewed. Or, really, anything else. Just "TECHNOLOGY! MAGIC!"
   11. SoSH U at work Posted: August 07, 2012 at 12:23 PM (#4202267)
Scully also used this event as an opportunity to advocate the use of replay. He more or less said, "we have all of this amazing technology now to replay this from multiple angles in slow motion and zoom in on it, but we don't avail ourselves of the technology to improve the game." And then he went on to mention that the argument that it would take more time makes no sense when you see how much time was already spent here watching each manager argue with the umpires and watching the umpires confer over the call on the field.


And then you see here, where we have access to multiple angles and slow-motion replay and people are in direct disagremeent whether the ball was caught/trapped.
   12. PreservedFish Posted: August 07, 2012 at 12:37 PM (#4202293)
I can't tell. The ball certainly bounces, and some of it certainly bounced off the lip of the glove, but it seems impossible to tell how much of the ball hit grass.
   13. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: August 07, 2012 at 01:29 PM (#4202332)

Which, unfortunately, doesn't take into account the number of calls per game that will be shouted on to be reviewed.


There's no reason to think it will be many. In the NFL, for 2008, there were an average of 0.9 coaches' challenges per team per game. And I expect the number in baseball would be far fewer, because there are far fewer difficult calls.
   14. Tom Nawrocki Posted: August 07, 2012 at 01:49 PM (#4202345)
The call could have gone either way, but the way the umpires overturned it seemed pretty ridiculous. The first-base umpire made the initial out call, then the umps convened for several minutes, after which it was overturned. The second-base ump obviously didn't see the play, or he would have made the initial call. So somehow, the third-base and home-plate umpires must have convinced the original ruling ump - who was closer than both of them were - to change the call. And it took them several minutes to do so.

I'd love to know how that conversation went.
   15. DKDC Posted: August 07, 2012 at 01:55 PM (#4202355)
The NFL tries to discourage frivolous challenges by imposing a real cost on failed challenges (the loss of a timeout). Unused timeouts become less valuable near the end of a half, so they completely prohibit coach-initiated challenges in the last two minutes of a half.

What would be the equivalent scheme in baseball? No matter what, someone like a Maddon will find a way to burn completely bogus challenges just to be annoying.
   16. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: August 07, 2012 at 01:57 PM (#4202360)
I'd love to know how that conversation went.

"Did you see it?"

"No, I was blinkin'."

"I was also blinkin' blinking."

Scully is awesome...toward the end of the clip: "Jim's gone so he is spending house money now."

That's the line that got me, too.
   17. The Long Arm of Rudy Law Posted: August 07, 2012 at 02:02 PM (#4202366)
What would be the equivalent scheme in baseball? No matter what, someone like a Maddon will find a way to burn completely bogus challenges just to be annoying.


Ken Harrelson and Rex Hudler become your bench coaches for the rest of the week.
   18. Everybody Loves Tyrus Raymond Posted: August 07, 2012 at 02:46 PM (#4202420)
Comedian John Caponera used to do a bit about Vin's lip-reading. "Here comes Lasorda. It looks like he wants to take the ump to Fuddrucker's after the game, but the ump doesn't seem to like the place. Apparently he's eaten there before"
   19. PreservedFish Posted: August 07, 2012 at 03:12 PM (#4202465)
The NFL tries to discourage frivolous challenges by imposing a real cost on failed challenges (the loss of a timeout). Unused timeouts become less valuable near the end of a half, so they completely prohibit coach-initiated challenges in the last two minutes of a half.

What would be the equivalent scheme in baseball? No matter what, someone like a Maddon will find a way to burn completely bogus challenges just to be annoying.


We've talked about this a million times, and I believe the entire community agrees on the following:

Coach's challenges are an abomination. They have absolutely no place in baseball. The reviews must be prompted by the umpires themselves. (Possibly a 5th umpire, or a guy in a room full of TVs somewhere)
   20. Tripon Posted: August 07, 2012 at 03:19 PM (#4202479)
Tying a challenge to an out would deter frivolous challenges.
   21. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: August 07, 2012 at 03:19 PM (#4202481)
No way! No blinkin' way! No bloody way!
The little touch of the Queen's English on that last bit made me laugh.
   22. PreservedFish Posted: August 07, 2012 at 03:24 PM (#4202489)
Tying a challenge to an out would deter frivolous challenges.


What a stupid gimmick. The next morning debates will all be about if the manager used his challenge properly. I never want that to happen.
   23. Gary Truth Serum Posted: August 07, 2012 at 03:47 PM (#4202537)
The NFL tries to discourage frivolous challenges by imposing a real cost on failed challenges (the loss of a timeout). Unused timeouts become less valuable near the end of a half, so they completely prohibit coach-initiated challenges in the last two minutes of a half.


This may be a factor, but I think the real reason that challenges are initiated by the booth during the last two minutes is to prevent coaches from gaming the system. If coaches were allowed to challenge, they could "accidentally" challenge calls that they know can't be challenged by rule in order to get a free stoppage of play while the officials sort out the non-challenge. You can't unring that bell. (I've never seen an official rationale for that rule, though.)

For similar reasons, throwing the challenge flag during the last two minutes (or after a touchdown) is an automatic unsportsmanlike conduct penalty. Mike Holmgren used to delegate an assitant to take away his challenge flag at the two minute warning so he wouldn't forget that rule.
   24. Don Malcolm Posted: August 07, 2012 at 05:23 PM (#4202676)
Nice one, Dayn. Every year about this time we start putting out the prayer beads in the hopes that they'll influence Vin to come back for another season. So far, so good.
   25. Steve Treder Posted: August 07, 2012 at 05:29 PM (#4202683)
Coach's challenges are an abomination. They have absolutely no place in baseball. The reviews must be prompted by the umpires themselves. (Possibly a 5th umpire, or a guy in a room full of TVs somewhere)

Yes. Basically, the NHL model instead of the NFL model.

Why so few ever seem to comprehend this baffles me.
   26. BWV 1129 Posted: August 07, 2012 at 05:32 PM (#4202686)
Exactly, have a 5th official who signals that he wants to review a play. He gets two minutes to review it. He either overturns it or it stands. Done.
   27. Steve Treder Posted: August 07, 2012 at 05:48 PM (#4202698)
Exactly, have a 5th official who signals that he wants to review a play. He gets two minutes to review it. He either overturns it or it stands. Done.

Exactly, and if he doesn't see conclusive evidence to overturn the call, it stands.
   28. Robert in Manhattan Beach Posted: August 07, 2012 at 07:34 PM (#4202744)
Yes. Basically, the NHL model instead of the NFL model.

Why so few ever seem to comprehend this baffles me.


The NHL review goals which are very infrequent and greatly impact the outcome of the game. Baseball has already tried to copy this model by reviewing home runs. Not a fan, but fine. Expanding replay into fair/foul in play, trap/no trap, and, god forbid, safe/out calls would bring in a lot of more frequent, lower impact plays and slow the game down (not that many would notice, baseball moves at a snail's pace already). The NHL is not about to start reviewing offside calls and hand passes either. It's wasteful.
   29. cardsfanboy Posted: August 07, 2012 at 09:42 PM (#4202816)
I'm for replay, and this is the exact reason why I do not want replay on trapped balls. I've seen it from a bunch of angles and nothing on any of those angles are conclusive. It's not worth using replay for a call like that. If it's a clear trap ok, but if you can't tell within the first angle of the play in slow motion, let the call stand(assuming replay is put in to existence for this)

There's no reason to think it will be many. In the NFL, for 2008, there were an average of 0.9 coaches' challenges per team per game. And I expect the number in baseball would be far fewer, because there are far fewer difficult calls.


UGgh...Everything about the NFL instant replay rule is wrong. At no point in time should it become a coaches challenge option, that is just plain stupid.

Baseball doesn't burn timeouts, that is why it would be more. NFL doesn't challenge because of the risk of losing a valuable time out. The equivalent would be the next batter is given an automatic strkeout for the team making the challenge.

On top of that, .9 is basically one call per game? I watch a lot of baseball, and at best there is maybe two calls (per team)a week on average that a replay would make a difference. Saying one call per game is a ridiculously high number.

If coaches were allowed to challenge, they could "accidentally" challenge calls that they know can't be challenged by rule in order to get a free stoppage of play while the officials sort out the non-challenge. You can't unring that bell. (I've never seen an official rationale for that rule, though.)


That is the reason for the rule.
   30. cardsfanboy Posted: August 07, 2012 at 09:51 PM (#4202820)
e NHL review goals which are very infrequent and greatly impact the outcome of the game. Baseball has already tried to copy this model by reviewing home runs. Not a fan, but fine. Expanding replay into fair/foul in play, trap/no trap, and, god forbid, safe/out calls would bring in a lot of more frequent, lower impact plays and slow the game down (not that many would notice, baseball moves at a snail's pace already). The NHL is not about to start reviewing offside calls and hand passes either. It's wasteful.


There is no rational reason to think that Has to be the case. Yes, of course if Bud and company design a crappy replay system, then it's going to be crap. But a well designed replay system would be nearly seamless and nobody would notice it happening. This play right here, the Dodgers had the replay up, pretty much before the next pitch, a well designed replay system would have looked at the replay, and radioed the umpires with the result (NOT a time out for a replay, but the actual result) of the replay before the next pitch ever happens.

There is nothing wrong with turning calls that are 80% accurate to 95% accurate and not set up a system that attempts to be 100% accurate. A good system would have looked at that first replay, saw that it was inclusive and radioed to the crew chief play on the field stands, long before the umpires conference would have ended.
   31. Steve Treder Posted: August 07, 2012 at 10:11 PM (#4202836)
a well designed replay system would be nearly seamless and nobody would notice it happening. This play right here, the Dodgers had the replay up, pretty much before the next pitch, a well designed replay system would have looked at the replay, and radioed the umpires with the result (NOT a time out for a replay, but the actual result) of the replay before the next pitch ever happens.

There is nothing wrong with turning calls that are 80% accurate to 95% accurate and not set up a system that attempts to be 100% accurate. A good system would have looked at that first replay, saw that it was inclusive and radioed to the crew chief play on the field stands, long before the umpires conference would have ended.


This.
   32. Robert in Manhattan Beach Posted: August 08, 2012 at 03:23 AM (#4202956)
Yes, of course if Bud and company design a crappy replay system, then it's going to be crap. But a well designed replay system would be nearly seamless and nobody would notice it happening.

The NFL has complete control of their officials and has honed their system for years and hasn't approached "seamless". Baseball can't even get their umpires to enforce fundamental strike zone or pace of play rules, I have no confidence they could devise and extensive replay system without it turning into a clusterfuc#.
   33. Moeball Posted: August 08, 2012 at 08:42 PM (#4203862)
The sad thing is - the one part of umpiring in baseball that impacts more games negatively than all the Don Denkinger type mistakes combined - is the inability of umpires to call a decent strike zone. I know they can't include ball/strike stuff as part of replay for obvious reasons, but it is the one part of officiating that needs the biggest overhaul, IMHO.

I've sat behind home plate for a lot of Padres games over the years (Club level so I'm up a little bit) and sometimes I wished I couldn't see what I was seeing. I may not be able to judge perfectly whether a pitch was high or low - but I can definitely tell when a pitch doesn't remotely come close to crossing the plate (TV replays confirm this) and yet the umps consistently call those strikes anyways...
   34. cardsfanboy Posted: August 09, 2012 at 12:10 AM (#4203989)
The NFL has complete control of their officials and has honed their system for years and hasn't approached "seamless". Baseball can't even get their umpires to enforce fundamental strike zone or pace of play rules, I have no confidence they could devise and extensive replay system without it turning into a clusterfuc#.


The NFL is a truly craptacular run organization. They come up with silly rules every off season for the sake of generating press about their silly rules. They have allowed instant replay to rewrite the rules based upon making it "easier" to get the replay call right. If at any point in time you are saying "something should emulate football" and you aren't looking for an ironic example of unfettered capitalism at the expense of the quality of the product and the welfare of their own employees, then you have made a wrong turn in your logic.

Baseball has slowly dipped their toes into the replay market, by all accounts hasn't been trying to force the issue or prevent but has been cautiously weighing the options. I don't see how they are comparable organizations. NFL blunders head first into decisions, and damn anyone who would oppose them.

The sad thing is - the one part of umpiring in baseball that impacts more games negatively than all the Don Denkinger type mistakes combined - is the inability of umpires to call a decent strike zone. I know they can't include ball/strike stuff as part of replay for obvious reasons, but it is the one part of officiating that needs the biggest overhaul, IMHO.


They could, but they aren't going to for another 15 years minimum. They will want to prove the worth of the replay system before coming with any type of strike zone system.

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