MLB has decided to try the automated strike zone during minor league play.
In fact, they have been trying it for a while and they have liked the results.
However, they remain undecided to implement it in Major League Baseball for the 2024 season, according to MLB insider Bob Nightengale.
“There still has been no decision about whether there will be an automated strike zone in MLB in 2024, Rob Manfred says,” he tweeted.
There still has been no decision about whether there will be an automated strikezone in MLB in 2024, Rob Manfred says
— Bob Nightengale (@BNightengale) December 6, 2022
The fact that there has been no decision yet doesn’t mean the situation can’t change in the upcoming days or weeks.
For now, all we know is that the automated zone won’t be used in 2023.
However, 2024 might be a different story.
There are conflicting reports about MLB umpires’ success rate in 2022 and recent seasons, but with Twitter and other tech resources becoming more widespread, their failures become more evident by the day.
Social Media Has Exposed Umpires
Social media usually exposes a lot of MLB umpires, and while there are some of them who can be considered excellent at what they do (for example, Pat Hoberg called a game with no mistakes in the World Series), it seems like they make too many blunders and botch lots of calls that can ultimately change the outcome of a game.
In an effort to make the game more fair, the league could be willing to introduce the “robo umpires” in the not so distant future.
Could it be in 2024?
Maybe, but there is nothing official yet.
Manfred had said in June that there could be two options for the automated zone to work in MLB: the first one would have the robo-umpires serve as an automated system, calling pitches and communicating balls and strikes to human umpires with an earpiece; and a second alternative would have robo umpires as a review and replay system of balls and strikes that lets skippers challenge calls.
We will have to wait to know if the technology will be used in 2024 or in the future.