PARADISE VALLEY, Ariz. - Major League Baseball is considering scaling back its planned ambitious expansion of instant replay so it can be implemented in time for the upcoming season, league executive vice president of baseball operations Joe Torre said Wednesday night.
"I think it's going to happen," Torre said at the owners meetings.
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Torre said MLB is considering adding fair/foul calls and limited safe/out calls with a manager's challenge. Previous incarnations of the system proposed to begin this season included all safe/out calls.
"It's not a perfect game," Torre said. "If you try to get every single thing right, you'd have to time the game with a calendar."
The current replay plan looks only at whether a ball is a home run. "The home run thing, it's worked really well," Torre said. Of the changes, Torre said, "We certainly don't want a play at the plate where umpires realize they were wrong and couldn't do anything about it."
Adding fair/foul and some safe/out calls is a big step, and the manager's challenge system is unprecedented. But Torre doesn't want MLB to go too far too fast.
"The one thing I can say is I'd rather add more later than have too much of it and really have it affect our game," Torre said. "Our game, unlike the other sports, we don't have built-in timeouts . . .I know everybody wants to get everything right, but that's not realistic."
Torre said the umpires are on board, but any plan approved by the owners must also be approved by the players' union for 2014.
Owners also are discussing banning home-plate collisions at these meetings.