Things are a little bit quieter on the field between managers and the home plate umpire. Can fans still boo the called balls and strikes when a robot is making the call?
It's happening with the Houston Astros' Triple A affiliate in Sugar Land, Texas among many other Triple A affiliates (the Jumbo Shrimp are a Triple-A team but don't have the cameras yet). An Automated Ball-Strike (ABS) system, is making the calls behind the plate. Cameras positioned around field are part of a Hawk-Eye system which tracks the pitch and the strike zone. The home plate umpire still "officially" makes the call as he has an earpiece that gives him, nearly automatically, what to call on the pitch. Players, fans and coaches don't really notice any hesitation in what an umpire would normally call.
And the results? No one is really arguing. Players like the consistency of the strike zone. Fans can't scream that the ump "hates our team."
Will it make it to the Major Leagues? Some MLB hall of famers believe it should be there. How can they not look at it? While watching on TV, we all see the strike zone and if they missed the call or not. It would be nice to let the umpire in on the technology as well.
What do you think?