Mike Pereira does fantastic work as Fox's rules expert for the NFL and college football. He's so good, in fact, that the network wanted to use him in the same capacity for Major League Baseball games. Pereira claims MLB chief baseball officer Joe Torre stepped in to squash that idea.
Pereira told the story on the Papa & Lund podcast, and claimed it happened a few years after he started with Fox in 2010. The network signed a new deal with MLB and asked him if he wanted to learn the rules and fill the same role for baseball broadcasts.
Here's what happened in Pereira's own workds:
"“They asked if I wanted to do it and go to umpire school to learn the rules. I decided, OK, I will do it. I’ll go to the baseball school. I will come up and learn the rules so that I can do this role and I actually talked to some umpires and a couple of people in the umpire department in New York and Major League Baseball. But Joe Torre put the nix on it. He nixed me. He said ‘we don’t want a guy being our rules specialist who’s never umpired.'""
While I enjoy Pereira's work, Torre did the right thing. A former umpire should have been the guy chosen as the network's baseball rules expert. In the end, Fox interviewed a few but wound up not selecting anyone.