The Baltimore Orioles have seen their share of bad calls, both over the years and in 2019. We’ve also seen our share of that in the ongoing World Series, last night being no exception. I’m not going to explain what happened in the seventh inning, because I’m going to assume that most fans saw it or are aware of it at this point. If you aren’t, google it – you’ll find it!
Here’s my take; if you really want to go by the letter of the rule, the base runner’s foot was inside the first base line. So again by the true letter of the rule perhaps it was correct. However it was really borderline in the sense that it was close. Does MLB really want to make that close of a call in an elimination game in THE WORLD SERIES?
To make matters worse, it appeared that the umpires went to review the situation via instant replay. This on a play that isn’t reviewable to begin with. However according to the umpiring crew, they were never reviewing the play. They were looking for a rules clarification. Yet, once they got off the radios one of them signaled OUT.
And that might be the most incriminating part of this. If the play was never under review why would they need to reaffirm the call? End of the day, I think home plate umpire Sam Holbrooke knew that he made a mistake. And at the end of the day, it wasn’t one that could be covered up.
The Houston pitcher retired the first batter after this fiasco. He then proceeded to surrender a two-run homer. Pitchers are conditioned to be in the moment among other things. So when delays happen, it does affect them. That four to five minute delay in essence froze the Houston pitcher. Thus both teams should have a beef with the situation.
If I were either manager in tonight’s game seven, I’d make it clear in no uncertain terms that my expectation is that nothing shady will be occurring on behalf of the umpires in the game. And if it does, I’ll be pulling my team off the field. If that sounds draconian, keep in mind that you’d be daring MLB to declare a World Series Champion by forfeit. And it would serve them right.