Baseball Manager Challenge Rules

Baseball Manager Challenge Rules

Umpires are not always perfect, which is what prompted the challenge rule in Major League Baseball. The rule was implemented prior to the 2014 season and has been tweaked over time in order to adjust to the needs of the game. How does an MLB manager challenge a play? What types of plays can they challenge? What is the process of reviewing a call? What is the history behind the challenge rule in baseball? Keep reading to find out.


Manager challenges in the MLB allow for team managers to have a call made by an umpire looked at again to ensure that it is in fact the correct call. Each team is granted one challenge during each regular-season game and two challenges in the playoffs. Managers can use their challenge at any point in the game.

Managers are given 20 seconds after the end of each called play to decide if they want to use their challenge. If the manager wins their challenge, they retain the right to use it again. If no part of the call is overturned, the manager loses their challenge for the rest of the game. Home run calls, boundary calls, fair and foul balls, outs, catches, base running calls, hits-by-pitches, home plate calls, tag-ups, and interference calls can all be looked at through instant replay. All plays that are reviewed are sent to the Replay Command Center in New York City and are reviewed by replay officials there. A call can only be overturned if there is clear evidence against the call on the field.


  • A runner is tagged out at first, but their team’s coaches believe they were actually safe. The manager challenges the call, and after review, the call is overturned. The runner is safe on base and the manager retains their challenge.
  • A batter is advanced to first base as the result of a hit-by-pitch. The pitcher believes they hit the knob of the bat instead and indicates to their manager that they should challenge. The manager challenges the call, but review confirms it is a hit-by-pitch. The batter advances to first and the manager loses their challenge.
  • A batter on a team with two outs hits a fly ball into center field, and one of his fellow base runners, who is on third, runs for home. The fly ball is missed, but the batter is thrown out after trying to advance to second base, and a third out is called even though the base runner on third seems to have reached home. The manager challenges, and replay shows that the runner did reach home just before the out. The out is upheld, but a point is added to the batting team’s score for the successful run.


Major League Baseball began its usage of video replay during the 2008 season. At the time, plays could only be reviewed at the discretion of the umpires. In 2014, the rule was widely expanded, allowing managers to ask for replays and creating the modern challenging system. The rule allowing managers to keep their challenges if they are won was set one year later. A 30-second time limit was introduced prior to the 2017 campaign, which was later shortened to 20 seconds before the 2020 season. More and more calls have been added to the list of being eligible for review as time goes on.

Aaron Boone, the current manager of the New York Yankees, has the highest success rate of active MLB managers. The Yankees skipper correctly challenges roughly 61% of the time. During the 2022 World Series between the Houston Astros and Philadelphia Phillies, there were eight challenges in six games. The Phillies called for four challenges, the Astros called for two challenges, and the umpire crew called for two challenges. During the 2022 MLB regular season and postseason, there were 1,390 total challenges. 665 of the challenges were overturned and 725 of them were not overturned.

Similar Rules to Manager Challenges


What is a manager’s challenge in baseball?

The manager's challenge in baseball is a rule that allows MLB managers to challenge calls during a game. Managers are allowed to ask for a play to be reviewed at any point of the game, which is then reviewed at the Replay Command Center. Managers are given one challenge to use per game. If they are successful with their challenge, managers get to keep it. They lose the challenge if the play that is reviewed is upheld.