Replay has been a bit of a challenge for Cards

News-DemocratJune 21, 2014 

— St. Louis Cardinals manager Mike Matheny has made 10 challenges on umpires' calls this season. Only three, however, have been overturned, according to statistics compiled by Baseball Reference.

Just one other manager, Tampa Bay's Joe Maddon, has a lower success rate (7-for-24, 29 percent) on challenges than Matheny.

The highest success rate is by Miami Marlins manager Mike Redmond (12-for-14, 85 percent). He's followed by the New York Yankees' Joe Girardi (11-for-15, 73 percent) and San Francisco's Bruce Bochy (13-for-18, 72 percent).

Through Friday, Matheny, San Diego's Bud Black, Milwaukee's Ron Roenicke and Cincinnati's Joe Price are tied for the fewest number of challenges. The Chicago Cubs' Rick Renteria had the most with 26.

"Anything that's close, we're trying," Matheny said Saturday. "It just so happens, for whatever reason, we're not having a whole lot of blatant misses, or the ones we think are (blatant) aren't getting reversed. How to explain that and how to get better at that, I'm open (to suggestions)."

The latest miss by Matheny came Friday night, when crew chief Larry Vanover called Philadelphia's Marlon Byrd safe at first base. Byrd grounded to shortstop, but was ruled safe when first baseman Matt Adams pulled his foot off the base.

Replays indicated Adams got his foot back on the base ahead of Byrd, but the call stood after being reviewed in New York.

"It truly looked like (Adams) got to the bag," Matheny said. "That would be one of those that's, 'Here we go. This will be one that works in our favor.' Sure enough, no. I'm at a loss, really."

Through Friday, 255 of 543 calls (47 percent) have been overturned: 237 of 461 (51.4 percent) from managers and 18 of 82 (22 percent) from umpires.

Matheny said he is supposed to talk soon with Major League Baseball Executive Vice President Joe Torre about replay.

"I don't even know exactly what he wants to hear," Matheny said. "I don't have any great wisdom or strong opinions except, 'Joe, it hasn't worked out great for us. Show me where I'm doing something wrong and I'm all ears and ready to make an adjustment.'"

Matheny said he might prefer to have an additional umpire on site to initiate challenges, rather than the managers. The National Football League uses a similar system to handle close calls.

"There's a number of managers that believe (replay) has kind of turned it into a sideshow for the managers," Matheny said. "If the umpires are truly going to take care of it, have somebody else here."

Contact reporter David Wilhelm at dwilhelm@bnd.com or 239-2665. Follow him on Twitter: @DavidMWilhelm.

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