Well, after watching my fill of the Reds and Cardinals game, I'm starting to wonder how exactly the umpires are being graded and/or reprimanded for blown calls. Pretty much anything within 3-5 inches of home plate was called a strike tonight. I mean literally, with a right handed batter at the plate, you could throw a 2 seam fastball INSIDE the left-handed hitters batter's box, and the umpire would call it a strike. Granted, the zone was consistent, as both teams got this call, but that changed in a key spot of the game when Tyler Greene was called out on a strike 3 looking that was at his ankles.
I know that going into the season they had talked about grading the umpires with a different system, but so far it's not going so well from what I can tell. I think the time has come that the umpires need to start being fined x amount of dollars for each blown call, be it a ball/strike call, a play at a bag, or whatever else you can think of that's a questionable call. I think it also might be time to start introducing instant replay for other purposes beyond home run/no home run and fair/foul. There was another play that I'm pretty sure Joe Thurston was out at first base, but he was called safe anyway. I'll gladly go ahead and say that there's no problem with them fixing their blown calls, even if it negatively effects my team's outcome.
To put some of this into perspective, Albert Pujols argued with the umpire pretty much every time he was up at the plate, and we all know that he rarely does that, if ever. I actually thought he was going to be ejected at one point, but he clearly had reason to be upset. So anyway, what is everyone's views on how to control the umpires? They are starting to develop egos so big that they think they ARE the game, but they're supposed to be there just to call the game correctly to the best of their ability. If it's not within their ability to be respectably accurate, then what should be done? Like I said earlier, I think fines would be a great way to go, or maybe even suspensions. It would be far-fetched for MLB to consider replacing umpires completely, although at this day in age, it's totally possible. Chime in people, lets hear your creative opinions as to what to do with these guys.