Major League Baseball announced Tuesday that expanded replay is out for this year, with the goal now to put the extra looks in play for 2013.
Baseball had sought to increase video reviews this season to include trapped balls, fair-or-foul rulings down the lines, and fan interference all over the ballpark.
The additional replay required the approval of MLB and the unions representing the umpires and the players.
According to several people familiar with the situation, there were several sticking points.
Umpires were concerned the television feeds they received to review calls were not equal at every ballpark. The umps get fewer looks in Oakland, for example, than at Yankee Stadium.
Also at issue is how calls would be made under expanded replay and who would ask for a challenge. Would umpires still make the final decision, as they do now? Or would there be an NHL-style conference room with an MLB executive making the ruling?
As part of the negotiations, the umpires would like something in return - maybe additional retirement or disability benefits, or perhaps a seventh umpire for postseason crews so more umps could get a chance in October.
The players’ union, meanwhile, wants to wait to weigh in until after MLB and the umpires reach an understanding.
Koufax on list to testify
Hall of Fame lefthander and Dodgers great Sandy Koufax is among witnesses scheduled to testify at a trial next week to determine if the Mets’ owners must give up hundreds of millions of dollars they received from jailed financier Bernard Madoff.
Koufax’s name is on a list submitted to a federal judge of a dozen witnesses whom the Mets’ lawyers plan to call to the witness stand at the civil trial in Manhattan. Koufax is a childhood friend of Mets chief executive Fred Wilpon and also had an account with Madoff.
Lawyers for Irving Picard, a trustee recovering money for investors who lost billions in the Madoff fraud, filed papers to try to block testimony from Koufax.
Ramirez goes deep
Manny Ramirez hit his first home run of the spring in Oakland’s 8-6 win over a Brewers split squad in Phoenix. Ramirez, who must serve a 50-game suspension to start the season for a second drug violation, blasted a solo homer to left-center in his first at-bat against righthander Mike Fiers. Ramirez, who has not played in the majors since last April, had been 0 for 8 this spring . . . Yu Darvish couldn’t command his fastball over three innings for the Rangers in an 8-8 tie with the Indians in Goodyear, Ariz. The Japanese star walked four in his second spring start. He allowed two runs and three hits and struck out three . . . Dan Haren struck out seven of the last eight batters he faced in three innings and the Angels shut out the Diamondbacks, 3-0, in Scottsdale, Ariz. . . . Carlos Zambrano struck out five in four innings in the Marlins’ 2-2 tie with the Braves in Jupiter, Fla. The last time Zambrano faced the Braves was Aug. 12, when he stormed off the mound after allowing eight runs, cleaned out his locker, and never pitched again for the Cubs.