Umpires overturn Braun call after Fredi's challenge
Initially ruled safe at first base in sixth inning, Brewers outfielder shown out on replay
MILWAUKEE -- Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez now holds the distinction of being the first manager to issue a challenge that led umpires to reverse a call courtesy of Major League Baseball's expanded replay system.
Gonzalez issued the challenge after first-base umpire Greg Gibson ruled Brewers outfielder Ryan Braun safe at first base to begin the bottom of the sixth inning of Monday's Opening Day game at Miller Park. After a review that lasted approximately 58 seconds, the umpires overturned Gibson's ruling.
"It sure felt like I was out there for 10 or 15 minutes," Gonzalez said after Monday's 2-0 loss. "Before tonight is over, I'm going to put a clock on it and see exactly how long it took. But they got the play right, and that is the bottom line."
As the on-site umpires communicated with the umpires reviewing the play at Major League Baseball Advanced Media's Replay Operations Center, a replay shown on the video board at Miller Park did not elicit much of a response from Brewers fans, who seemingly recognized that third baseman Chris Johnson's throw beat Braun to the first-base bag.
"I had a pretty good idea I was out," Braun said. "For all of us, we just hope they get it right, and they did get it right. Whether we're on the good end or bad end, I think as players all we can hope for is that they're able to get it right."
Braves president John Schuerholz, who was one of the men responsible for devising the current replay system, and Brewers manager Ron Roenicke echoed the sentiments of those within the two clubhouses who were simply happy the correct ruling was made.
Roenicke briefly argued, but chose not to challenge a bang-bang ruling second-base umpire Paul Schrieber made to end the second inning. Because the disputable call came at the end of an inning, Roenicke had just 20 seconds to decide if he wanted to issue a challenge.
Thus he did not have the same luxury as Gonzalez, who had time to discuss the play long enough for Braves replay coordinator Horacio Ramirez to view video in the clubhouse and then call the dugout to inform bench coach Carlos Tosca that a challenge should be issued.
"We went right through the process," Gonzalez said. "We've still got some kinks to work on in here with the video and the feed. I thought for sure he was out and I went right out there. Maybe I'll take a little more time to let the video process a little longer for them to give me a signal."
Gibson became a part of history in a game that he was not originally assigned to work. He was serving as a replacement for injured umpire Alfonso Marquez.
Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.