Chicago Cubs: It’s time to activate the Electronic Strike Zone

(Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)
(Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) /
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Chicago Cubs and MLB players have been attacked by an onslaught of lousy umpire calls this past month. When will the Electronic Strike Zone be ready?

Last year, umpires were hounded in the media for their bad calls. In fact, your friendly neighborhood Chicago Cubs Scribe even talked about this here, Chicago Cubs: An electronic strike zone is coming to baseball.

Last season, Cubs’ utility player, Ben Zobrist‘ remark to a sideways call by umpire Phil Cuzzi reignited the conversation of the Electronic Strike Zone (ESZ). As reported, Zobrist said, ‘That’s why we want an electronic strike zone,’ to Cuzzi but wasn’t ejected until he returned to argue with Cuzzi between innings.

Earlier in that game, Cubs manager Joe Maddon was tossed for arguing calls as well, but Zobrist was the first player to be quoted during a game saying players want an Electronic Strike Zone (ESZ). It’s historical.

The Chicago Cubs were not alone last season as multiple MLB teams reported bad calls of umpires more than ever before; but why? Had umpires just gotten this bad overnight? Is this the product of a steady progression of bad calls throughout the years? Has the game gotten so competitive, that bad calls cannot be tolerated any longer? Should umpires be aided or replaced altogether?

Critics will say it’s been a mixture of all of these, but the ‘every game matters’ sentiment in the Chicago Cubs and other dugouts throughout baseball are making players and management hyper-aware of bad calls. This year, everyone is literally screaming (at umpires) for change. The most recent tirades at strike-callers are coming from Cubs’ outfielder, Kyle Schwarber and Philadelphia Phillies outfielder, Bryce Harper.