Sunday, October 27, 2013

Obstruction Discussion

What follows is my initial status post on Facebook regarding the play that ended game 3 of the World Series last night and the comments of others:

"ZEB:  I don't profess to know the baseball rulebook rule by rule (and seemingly everyone agrees that last play of the game was the right call) but I do have to ask: It's obstruction if the f'ing running trips over the third baseman WHO WAS NOT IN THE BASE LINE?

JEFF:  Iffy call, for sure. I can see it going either way.
HEIDI:  What I don't understand was the throw to 3rd was missed because of the slide into 3rd which caused the fall , wasn't that obstruction first?????? An ugly ugly win for the cardinals- maybe good motivation for the sox, this team will not give up. I thought also that the strike zone definitely got a bigger box last night for the cardinals too.
JEFF:  It would have been interference, Heidi, if he had tried to bump the Boston player on third, but he was sliding into base and didn't actually intend to bump him (looks like his knee grazed the third baseman's foot causing him to stumble). Ticky tacky both ways since the third baseman fell trying to get the ball and was in the process of getting back up when the baserunner fell over HIM.
ZEB:  Over Middlebrooks is not the most direct route to home.
HEIDI:  My point was that it was the base runner who caused the 3rd basemen to stumble who became the obstruction - so I might have been ok with the obstruction call if the 3rd basemen tripped up with out any prior entanglement but I think that call under replay in the future would be overturned with an adjustment to the rule as written now r, The 3rd basement wouldn't have fallen if no slide, if the slide causes the fall, obstruction should not be called. Just my feeling of a rule clearly not explained very well. The player did not mean to obstruct and had no means not to instruct, if there was intent to obstruct the runner and no way of making a play obstruction would have been fine. I am not complaining of the call - although I think pause might have someone rethink it but as written I get it, it doesn't mean it adds to the game in fact it was a detraction.
ZEB:   Ed Armbrister, 1975.
JEFF:  The problem was he lifted his legs as he started to get up, just as the guy tried to go over him. It LOOKED like intent to trip, even if it wasn't. But after seeing another frame by frame, I agree with Zeb... he wasn't in the base path, and the guy didn't need to go over him to get to home. Had he just run straight down the line, he probably would have beat the throw and they would have won cleanly.
ZEB:  Exactly. What the hell he was doing two feet inside the line. But I will say this, I hate to lay the outcome of almost any game on one play, even if it is the last and most visible. Really shouldn't have come down to that in any event.
GEORGE:  @Zeb: "Over Middlebrooks is not the direct path home," that is precisely my point. Between the time the ball got past Middlebrooks and the runner made the move towards home, all of that was a part of the play (which is why I don't understand the ""obstruction" rule). But if that is the rule, then it definitely seemed to me that the runner "could have" made a jog to the right to avoid the "obstruction" (Middlebrooks); instead, making the decision to try to climb (stumble) over Middlebrooks (the shortest distance) put Middlebrooks in the play then you have to give the 3d baseman the benefit of the doubt. From every angle I saw, the runner wasn't tripped by the baseman, he just slipped (stumbled) of his own volition.
HEIDI:   UGHHHHH LY game- the boys will rebound, use it as motivation. You guys got this right -I haven't heard any pundits explain it this well.
GREG:  This could have been avoided if Salty had held onto the ball and forced the runner to stay on third. There's a lot of "what ifs", and I like and respect Salty, but it was a bad choice on his part. Hindsight. Tonights a chance to redeem - there's a lot of this series left. Hopefully, the boys will put it behind them and come out swinging tonight.
MICHAEL:  Dude shouldn't have pushed from the second level.
MIKE:   Some responsibility has to go to runner who literally took two steps back towards second base as he was looking at the left fielder. Middlebrooks was lifting his legs to not obstruct the chalkline. Plain and simple; shitty call..."

Add your thoughts in the comments.

1 comment:

Michael said...

I am not a baseball person, but the last two Patriots games, as well as Red Sox games have just had some strange stuff going on. The obstruction, the tagged out at first, the pushing on the kick (which the NFL now says the Jets did too during the same game) and the batted ball penalty.

All just very odd. I look forward to a normal game without learning a new rule, or interpretation of one.