How is Ned Yost doing with challenges?

Jamie Squire

I challenge you to evaluate how Ned is doing with challenges.

This year Major League Baseball jumped into the 21st century to the ire of purists (and those that hate ten minute delays) by adopting an instant replay system to deal with controversial calls. Managers were given a challenge system where they could ask for an instant replay judgment from a booth manned by a mysterious shadowy individual in New York. The system has had its controversies and tweaks, but for the most part, the system has operated rather smoothly.

How has Ned adapted to this new technology? Last night, Yost challenged an out call on an attempted steal by Pedro Ciriaco in the ninth inning, and the replay overturned the call to give the Royals back an out and put a runner in scoring position.

The website Baseball Savant has been cataloging challenge plays all season and provides the following data:

  • The Royals have the fourth most challenges in baseball with 21. Only the Cubs (27), Rays (26), and Blue Jays (24) have more. Four teams (Cardinals, Padres, Reds, Brewers) have just ten challenges this year.
  • Of the 21 challenges by the Royals, 14 have resulted in the play being overturned for a percentage of 66.7%. The league average is 47.5%.
  • The Royals have challenged 12 times on a force play, 8 times on a tag play, and once on a hit-by-pitch.
  • Nine of their challenges have been while they are hitting, twelve have been while they are on defense.
  • The Royals have scored nine runs following an overturned call while they were up.
  • The breakdown of challenges by inning is:
Inning 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
Challenges 2 4 2 3 1 3 3 2 1

Here is a log of all the challenges initiated by the Royals this year:

Date Inning/Score Runners/Outs Play Ruling on the Field Instant Replay Ruling Runs Following Play Win Expectancy for KC wWPA for KC Final Score
April 4, 2014 KC 7 CHW 4, top of 7 Runner at 1st, no out Jose Abreu grounds to third. Hosmer came off the bag on a force play at first base. Upheld 1 78.0% -7% KC 7 CHW 5
April 6, 2014 KC 0 CHW 0, top of 6 No one on, two out Marcus Semien grounds to Omar Infante. Ruling: Semien is safe at first base. Overturned 0 55.6% 2% KC 1 CHW 5
April 9, 2014 KC 0 TBR 0, bottom of 2 Runners at 1st and 2nd, two out Alex Gordon attempts to steal second on a Mike Moustakas strike out. Gordon is out at second base. Upheld 0 50.0% 9% KC 7 TB 3
April 17, 2014 KC 2 HOU 0, bottom of 2 No one on, two out Alex Presley grounds to Omar Infante. Presley is safe at first base. Overturned 0 72.0% 1% KC 5 HOU 1
April 29, 2014 KC 0 TOR 1, top of 2 Runner at 1st, two out Chris Getz grounds to Omar Infante. Getz is safe at first base. Overturned 0 44.0% 5% KC 10 TOR 7
May 10, 2014 KC 1 SEA 3, bottom of 7 Runners at 1st and 2nd, two out Robinson Cano advances to second on a wild pitch. Cano is safe at second base. Overturned 0 12.0% 2% KC 1 SEA 3
May 18, 2014 KC 1 BAL 3, bottom of 4 Runner at 1st, one out Salvador Perez grounds to Jonathan Schoop who throws it to second base. Alex Gordon is out on a force play at second base. Overturned 1 36.0% 5% KC 8 BAL 6
May 24, 2014 KC 3 LAA 4, bottom of 6 No one on, one out Hank Conger hits the ball down the right field line, Nori Aoki throws to second. Conger safe at second base. Upheld 0 23.0% -6% KC 7 LAA 4
May 25, 2014 KC 0 LAA 0, top of 1 Runner at 1st, no out Jarrod Dyson attempt to steal second base. Dyson out at second base. Upheld 0 48.0% -6% KC 3 LAA 4
May 29, 2014 KC 5 TOR 4, bottom of 5 Runner at 1st, two outs James Shields attempts to pick off Anthony Gose. Gose is safe at first abse. Overturned 0 66.0% 4% KC 8 TOR 6
May 29, 2014 KC 5 TOR 4, top of 6 Runners at 1st and 3rd, one out Wild pitch allows runner at third to score. Nori Aoki was hit by pitch, dead ball, runner cannot advance. Upheld 0 76.0% 1% KC 8 TOR 6
June 1, 2014 KC 0 TOR 4, bottom of 8 No one on, two outs Brett Lawrie grounds to Mike Moustakas who throws to first for the force out. Lawrie is safe at first base. Overturned 0 1.0% 0% KC 0 TOR 4
June 3, 2014 KC 0 STL 4, bottom of 3 No one on, one out Oscar Taveras grounds to Mike Moustakas who throws to first for the force out. Eric Hosmer came off the bag, Taveras is safe at first base. Overturned 0 10.0% 0% KC 8 STL 7
June 4, 2014 KC 0 STL 2, bottom of 7 Runners at 1st and 2nd, one out Lorenzo Cain grounds into a double play. Cain is out at first base. Upheld 0 13.0% -16% KC 2 STL 5
June 10, 2014 KC 0 CLE 0, bottom of 3 Runners at 1st and 2nd, one out Jarrod Dyson gronds to Jason Kipnis who throws to second for a force out. Asdrubal Cabrera drops the ball. Cabrera had control, runner is out. Overturned 4 66.0% 7% KC 9 CLE 5
June 14, 2014 KC 6 CHW 0, bottom of 8 Runners at 1st and 2nd, one out Dayan Viciedo singles to right field. Nori Aoki throws home to get Adam Eaton. Eaton is safe at home. Overturned 0 100.0% 1% KC 9 CHW 1
June 15, 2014 KC 6 CHW 1, top of 4 Runner at 1st, no out Alcides Escobar hits a groundball to shortstop, Alexei Ramirez gets the out at second, throws to first for the force. Escobar out at first base. Overturned 1 89.0% -1% KC 6 CHW 3
June 17, 2014 KC 4 DET 0, top of 2 Runner at 1st no out Jarrod Dyson hits a bunt, fielded by Max Scherzer who throws to first for the force. Dyson is out at first base. Overturned 3 88.0% 2% KC 11 DET 4
June 19, 2014 KC 1 DET 1, bottom of 4 Runner at 2nd no out Victor Martinez flies to deep left field. Alex Gordon throws to second base to force out Miguel Cabrera. Cabrera is safe at second base. Overturned 1 49.0% 12% KC 1 DET 2
June 24, 2014 KC 0 LAD 0, top of 1 Runner at 3rd, one out Yasiel Puig grounds to third, Danny Valencia throws to first base to get the force out. Puig is safe at first base. Upheld 1 43.0% -2% KC 0 LAD 2
June 25, 2014 KC 4 LAD 5, bottom of 9 Runner at 1st, one out Pedro Ciraco attempts to steal second base. Ciraco is out at second base. Overturned 0 28.0% 7% KC 4 LAD 5
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