The day of reckoning has finally come. All fifteen baseball games today will have the possibility of an umpire's call being challenged by instant replay. Only home run calls can be reviewed, so don't expect to see any problems when the Giants are at bat. According to this piece on MLB.com, the decision to review a play will rest solely on the shoulders of the umpire crew chief:
If a play is to be reviewed, the crew chief and at least one other umpire, possibly two, will go into the room and pick up a phone, which is a direct line to a video room in New York run by MLB Advanced Media. Then, the umpires will be relayed feeds from both the home and away teams' television broadcasts, and possibly use the home team's in-house feed, if necessary. An umpire supervisor will be in New York, but only to serve as a technical advisor as to what feeds are needed, and will not assist in making the call.
There is no set time for these decisions, but Young said they want to make a determination in 2 minutes, 30 seconds.
"The room" in question is the umpires dressing room. In some stadiums, that's near the dugouts, but in awkward multi-use warehouses like the Metrodome, it's a ways away from the field, up a huge flight of stairs. Sure, the umps will make their decision in 2 minutes, 30 seconds once they make it to the dressing room but what about the ten minutes it takes them to get there and back? Really, we gotta wait for someone like this guy to chug up those steps?
The managers will have no input as to whether the instant replay machine gets put into use, but do you really think this fact will stop them from arguing the point? One of these chucklehead managers is going to throw a red flag as a goof...and my vote is for Bobby Valentine when he gets hired to replace Jerry Manuel next year for the Mets.