No timetable for Selig to act on instant replay recommendation
NAPLES, Fla. -- Baseball's chief operating officer reiterated Wednesday that there's no timetable for commissioner Bud Selig to act on a recommendation that instant replay be used to help umpires with some calls.
"Nothing's happened since the general managers' meetings," COO Bob DuPuy said Wednesday after club owners convened for two days of discussions on a variety of topics, including plans to play two exhibition games in China during spring training.
"I don't think it will come up," he said. "The general managers took an advisory vote. Nothing's been sent on to the commissioner yet. When he gets it, I'm confident he will look at it and decide what the next steps are to take. But there will be no action. There's no action to take."
GMs last week recommended for the first time that instant replay be adopted to assist umpires on such calls as whether potential home runs are fair or foul; whether balls go over outfield walls or hit the tops and bounce back; and whether fans interfere with possible homers.
DuPuy said at the time that he doubted whether the plan, which needs the approval of Selig as well as the unions for players and umpires, could be put in place by next season.
A more immediate issue is the status of talks to have the Los Angeles Dodgers and San Diego Padres play exhibition games in Beijing, most likely on March 14-15, at the ballpark to be used for the 2008 Olympics.
Earlier Wednesday, the commissioner's office announced the Boston Red Sox will begin defense of their World Series title with a pair of regular-season games against the Oakland Athletics in Tokyo on March 25-26.
"We're very pleased that we were able to work that out. We're still working on China," DuPuy said, adding the Beijing games will be discussed during an international committee meeting Thursday.
Although the Red Sox and A's would be the third set of teams to open the regular season in Japan, Major League Baseball would be making its first trip to China if details can be finalized.
Baseball is still trying to obtain a permit from the Chinese government to play the games.
"It's an administrative process, and we want to be very sensitive to the needs and protocols of the Chinese government," DuPuy said.
"This is the first time we've ever done this, and they are very busy with it being a pre-Olympic year. They've been very supportive of it, and we're hopeful of getting it done," DuPuy said.
The finance committee reviewed financial results for the year and approve the budget for 2008. There was also more talk about ways to speed up games, a topic Selig could address Thursday.
"There's a lot of concern about pace of game," DuPuy said, "and there was some discussions about what rules we have."
Meanwhile, he said he continues to work with officials in Miami on trying to get a new ballpark for the Florida Marlins.
"I had hoped I was going to go down there from here, but it looks now like it's going to be more like next week," DuPuy said. "The city and county are meeting with regard to formulating a proposal and trying to iron out some things."
Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press