Friday, October 5, 2012

Discussions: 2012 Wild Card Games

As the Wild Card games get underway, we again open the umpire forum to discussion. Notes include home plate umpire performance according to pitch f/x and UEFL Rules 6-2-b-a (horizontal bound, "Kulpa Rule") and 6-2-b-b (vertical strike zone, "Miller Rule"). Plays include significant plays, if such plays occur. For future games, notes include home plate umpire probables. "If necessary" games are not included.

- Final, STL@ATL, WC: HP Umpire Jeff Kellogg: pfx (85/90 Balls, 47/50 Strikes = 132/140 = 94.2%)
- Final, BAL@TEX, WC: HP Umpire Gary Darling: pfx (88/90 Balls, 40/48 Strikes = 128/138 = 92.8%)

Plays
STL@ATL, WC: Kellogg rules batter interference on running lane violation - Rule 6.05(k)
STL@ATL, WC: Sam Holbrook rules infield fly on fly ball to left field, shortstop to catch ball - Rule  2.00
- - STL@ATL, WC: Umpires' Press Conference with Torre, Reliford, Kellogg & Holbrook
- - STL@ATL, WC: Cardinals-Braves Infield Fly Rule: Protest Denied as Umpires Get Call Right [b/r]


Rule Citation
STL@ATL Under Protest (ATL): Rule 2.00 [INFIELD FLY]: An INFIELD FLY is a fair fly ball (not including a line drive nor an attempted bunt) which can be caught by an infielder with ordinary effort, when first and second, or first, second and third bases are occupied, before two are out. The pitcher, catcher and any outfielder who stations himself in the infield on the play shall be considered infielders for the purpose of this rule.

On the infield fly rule the umpire is to rule whether the ball could ordinarily have been handled by an infielder—not by some arbitrary limitation such as the grass, or the base lines. The umpire must rule also that a ball is an infield fly, even if handled by an outfielder, if, in the umpire’s judgment, the ball could have been as easily handled by an infielder. The infield fly is in no sense to be considered an appeal play. The umpire’s judgment must govern, and the decision should be made immediately.

Because the Infield Fly is a judgment call, Atlanta's protest, pursuant to Rule 4.19, may not be upheld: "No protest shall ever be permitted on judgment decisions by the umpire." However, Rule 2.00 specifies the umpire shall "immediately declare" infield fly if applicable. This portion of the call may be admissible, but because no runners were put in jeopardy by this action, this also is ultimately irrelevent. Accordingly, Atlanta's protest was denied.

133 comments :

tmac said...

great call by Kellogg on the interference..... in the braves/cards match up...That call may have changed the game!!

chris said...

you're right tmac,
it may've changed the game, but it was the correct call,

Anonymous said...

holbrook blowed a infield fly rule call- let gonzalez slide- braves fan throwing cups and other beverages onto field- ron darling back to his whining- nice final game for chipper. Or so it looks like so far.......

Anonymous said...

Uh oh. Infield fly rule controversy.

Anonymous said...

Horrible call.

Russ said...

What a horrible call by Sam Holbrook. Kozma was not camped under the ball and the ball was in the outfield. Holbrook continues to show me he is overrated. Every year he works an LCS or WS and every year he makes headscratching calls. Someone correct me if I am wrong, but I think Holbrook blew that call. Still not an excuse for Atlanta fans to act like that. Just horrible of them.

Anonymous said...

Aren't umpires from this series eligible for the LCS?

Cricket said...

The Braves fan in me is irrate...

The umpire in me is undecided.

I probably call this in a 2-man system, but in a 6-man, there is no way I call this from the outfield.

Ugh...I hope Mac hits a 3-run bomb here.

Anonymous said...

Holbrook completely blew the call..there was no normal effort by the infielder and he waited until ball was almost on the ground before making the call...Glad to see the game put under protest, even if it may not be eligible. I wouldn't be surprised to see Holbrook removed from the rest of the postseason.

Cricket said...

Ahh....This is a judgment call, unfortunately.

Anonymous said...

Braves just protested. Waste of time.

Anonymous said...

30 to 40 feet out in the outfield!! INFIELD fly rule.

Anonymous said...

The call of Infield Fly is a judgement call..however...the application of the rule to make the call immediately is not a judgement call...that factor should be able to be protested.

Anonymous said...

OMG!!! He makes the call as the ball is hitting the ground!

Daniel Christian said...

If you have to wait that long before calling it an infield fly... by definition it's cant be deemed ordinary effort

Anonymous said...

No matter how this game ends this will be Sam Holbrook's last post season assignment.

MLB can't have a call like that in a one game playoff.

Anonymous said...

As an umpire you are not watching the ball.. You are watching the fielders... So as soon as it is decided that it is an infield fly then it is called.. Has nothing to do with the location of the ball as you are ultimately not looking at that!

Anonymous said...

Basically impossible for that to have been called any later. The timing in itself is why this call is incorrect.

Bryan said...

Everyone is right. Unbelievable this is. Wow. It's a shame, we want replay's a protest, but its another judgement call that ruins the game of baseball

Anonymous said...

In the post season, why is there not a MLB representative at the game to make an IMMEDIATE ruling on a protest? I recall how Doug Harvey went to NL President (?Chub Feeney) to make the final ruling on the Vern Ruhle trap vs triple play in the 1989 NLCS.

Anon = LMS1953

Anonymous said...

Even if you are looking at the fielder, if it takes you until the ball drops to the ground to decide that the fielder should catch it with ordinary effort, then it's not ordinary effort. The replay clearly shows the fielder give up on the ball BEFORE Holbrook made the call.

Anonymous said...

So he was watching the fielder who was not under the ball?

UmpsRule said...

Oh boy...

Anonymous said...

Won't be long before a Ranger fan realizes the Cardinals got helped in the playoffs again by an umpire.

UmpsRule said...

This is not exactly a pristine umpiring performance the last two innings.

rhonda fadden said...

Absolutely! This was in NO way the correct call. Although by rule it is a judgement call, its a shame to see the Braves season possibly end this way.

rhonda fadden said...

Absolutely! This was in NO way the correct call. Although by rule it is a judgement call, its a shame to see the Braves season possibly end this way.

Anonymous said...

I think it was a good call.

UmpsRule said...

Also a shame is the disgraceful behavior of the Braves fans. Nice way to send off your superstar into retirement!

Anonymous said...

I cant stand listening to former baseball players acting like they know everything about umpiring.

Anonymous said...

good call

Will said...

OK,
Haven't looked through all the postings but I glanced at the 1st few, expecting eberyone to say good call, yeah - that's obvious. I am VERY surprised that anyone could look at the call and be upset. The infielder made it to the ball, turned and camped - the umpire then called infield fly (all of this is perfect) - then the player bails on his easy catch and lets it drop (the one and only mistake).
Why are people calling the fielder's mistake the umpire's mistake? The infielder could have caught the ball with ordinary effort - it's an infield fly. Some people are saying he called it late - but his timing was perfect - he waited until it was obvious that the fielder could catch the ball with ordinary effort (he waited until the fielder was camped under the ball). This call is so "textbook", I will use it when teaching the infield fly next year in my clinics!

DMay said...

If the protest is upheld, how is it fixed?

Anonymous said...

Will

Hopefully no one will attend your clinics

Anonymous said...

At anon 5:50...

Amen brother.

Not to mention the timing of the call is to protect the runners. And as late as this was called, no runners were put in jeopardy, so the lateness is irrelevant.

And of course the announcers have no clue what they are talking about.

FanBoy2012 said...

The call was late because it needs (and most often is) called almost immediately after the ball is hit. If it is not apparent from that point that it can be caught with ordinary effort then it should not be called. The runners need the call to be made as soon as possible so they can decide what they need to do. Yes, the fielder should have caught the ball, but it was in no way ordinary effort for him, and the call was made after he gave up on the ball.

Anonymous said...

@Will

Well said. Im glad some people know what they are talking about.

Pathetic its a playoff game and I still cant find video on it though.

Anonymous said...

Protest was reviewed and denied when Kellogg and Winters went under the stands following the play and spoke with MLB. (per Freddie Gonzalas who said Kellogg and Winters handled the situation perfectly.)

Anonymous said...

Hey Will, really good job typing words. You're probably the best I know at doing that out of eberyone I know.

Textbook timing. What a perfect call. MLB players always bail on balls they could easily catch. I can't believe these other rationally thinking humans don't agree with us who saw how perfect of a call this was. Me, you and Sammy should all teach that clinic together and then go out and each nachos with our shirts off and count how many people tell us we're awesome and how we're really dominating those nachos.

Text me.

Anonymous said...

*eat

Anonymous said...

Great call by Sam Holbrook. A lot of plumbers on here saying it should be called right away...that's not in the rulebook. It's not Sam's fault the SS bailed. When the SS throws his hands up that indicated ordinary effort. It was a nutcutter IFF...if the runners would have got doubled up on the dropped ball the plumbers would have been pissed too.

Anonymous said...

Russ..you're a plumber

Anonymous said...

I agree with Hunter. Good call

Anonymous said...

Really? Do you get the last say? Your post above shows your ignorance of the rules. He got the call right. Period.

Anonymous said...

Daniel...read the rulebook...you're wrong

Russ said...

What does plumber even mean? People use it all the time on this site but it makes no sense. You guys don't have to agree with me, but can we keep the name calling out of it. That is to everyone, not just the individual who called me a plumber. Take a note from tmac about how to disagree with someone, he said why he thought I was wrong and went about his business without making it personal and gave a very good explanantion. I gurantee you, Sam Holbrook is going out onto the field or into the clubhouse calling people rats and plumbers. There is no need to call people plumbers, it is quite immature.

Russ said...

*My last post should day "I gurantee you, Holbrook DOES NOT call people rats and plumbers"

Clarke Nelson said...

The ball dropped one second after the call was made. The umpire used bad judgment, but the protest shouldn't be upheld because of his bad judgment. The umpire's judgment governs this call so you can't protest a bad judgment. However the call must be made immediately, so that runners have the opportunity to tag up and advance. This call not only wasn't made immediately, it was made right before the ball dropped and in a part of the field where a double play could never be pulled off so the offense wasn't benefiting nor was being protected in any way which is the intent of the rule. The protest should be upheld not because of the bad judgment however (umpires can make bad judgments), but because the call was not made IMMEDIATELY as it is clearly stated in the rulebook.

tmac said...

Torre with Charlie Reliford, sammy and Kellogg at the podium right now...

All 6 umpires agreed with the infield fly call as did Torre and Reliford... Very interesting press conference. This should get the Holbrook detractors very agitated!

Anonymous said...

Russ...coaches and players are rats....are you a plumber Russ? Do you umpire at all? What level?

Anonymous said...

Ball could have and should have been caught...good call

Anonymous said...

Ignorant

Anonymous said...

Union workers getting their story straight and sticking together?? That's crazy talk...

Russ said...

My problem with the call was it didn't look like a routine fly ball and it should be called immediately. I never see Peter Kozma actually camped under the ball to make a catch, he is going back and the ball and probably would have caught it, but I would not call it routine. It is definetely possible Holbrook didn't realize how deep he was. Now, this obviously wasn't going to be a winnable protest because I am pretty sure it is not protestable.

On a positive side, great call by Jeff Kellogg on the out of the runners interference and he also had a terrific game behind the Plate. Winters also had some busters at first base that he got mostly right. I do believe his safe call for Chipper Jones in the ninth inning was incorrect but I haven't looked at a replay yet.

Anonymous said...

Calrke Nelson - When an infield fly is called, there is no need to tag up. NO RUNNERS were put in jeopardy by this call. The only effect was an out and a runner not on first. The timing of the call had NO impact on the runners at 2nd and 3rd. And how does the rule book define 'immediately'?? As soon as it is hit? Nope, because at that point you don't know anything about the fielders. Is immediately when the ball reaches it's apex??? Nope, still don't know where the fielders are. Infield fly can't be called until you know the fielders position in relation to the ball, so 'immediately' is relative.

Anonymous said...

"...The infield fly is in no sense to be considered an appeal play. The umpire's judgment must govern, and the decision should be made immediately."

Immediately it was not.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous @ 6:41 pm

"Ordinary" is also relative, then.

F Dizzle said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

People need to stop picking out individual words from the rulebook versus reading and understanding the entirety of the rule. There's an extra clause attached to the word IMMEDIATELY.

The infield fly is to be declared immediately PROVIDED that it becomes apparent that a batted ball will be an infield fly.

Until the umpire can judge that the infielder can get to the ball, there is no rush to make the ruling. In this case, when the shortstop slowed down and put his hands out as if he was making a routine catch, that's when the infield fly was called, which is correct. The fact that the shortstop ran away and the ball dropped right after has no bearing in this decision.

Russ said...

I just saw that the Umpires all agree with the call. I'm perfectly fine with that, its about having your Umpires back. These guys will be working the LCS together and Holbrook will be part of that crew. Anyone who thinks Holbrook is done for the playoffs are crazy. I don't agree with the call but Holbrook makes the LCS or World Series every year for a reason.

And I'm a plumber and players are rats, really? Is it possible for you to grow up a litttle bit? I am prefectly fine with you disagreeing with me and I may very well be wrong, but stop with this plumber nonsesne.

Lee Esbin said...

I like the NFHS rule on this... it says that it does not matter whether or not the IFF is called; if the IFF rule applies, it is an IFF. This was perfect, by-the-book IFF. Ball can be caught by infielder with ordinary effort. Doesn't matter where the ball is; it matters where the fielder is. He was camped. Therefore, IFF is correct call.

Anonymous said...

Rulebook says nothing about calling it immediately...you can call IFF after it hits the ground...you're showing your ignorance.

Anonymous said...

The whole comment:

"The umpire is to rule whether the ball could ordinarily have been handled by an infielder -- not by some arbitrary limitation such as the grass, or the base lines," it says. "The umpire must rule also that a ball is an infield fly, even if handled by an outfielder, if, in the umpire's judgment, the ball could have been as easily handled by an infielder. The infield fly is in no sense to be considered an appeal play. The umpire's judgment must govern, and the decision should be made immediately."

I don't think you need to wait until the shortstop *may* settle under it before it is determined to be "ordinary". Holbrook should have known by the location of the ball (and his years of experience) rather that could have been considered an ordinary effort by the shortstop BEFORE the last second.

No where in the rule does it say that an umpire must *wait* for a shortstop to get in place for it to be considered "ordinary".

It's kind of funny how "seasoned umpires" are actually arguing *for* something that isn't explicitly stated, nor is it implicit.

The fact of the matter is that Holbrook could have determined sooner if that could be considered an ordinary effort. Why that is even up for debate is beyond me.

Anonymous said...

Where is the press conf video?

Anonymous said...

"Rulebook says nothing about calling it immediately...you can call IFF after it hits the ground...you're showing your ignorance."

http://mlb.mlb.com/mlb/official_info/official_rules/definition_terms_2.jsp

Oh really, now? Pot, meet kettle.

Anonymous said...

@ Anonymous 6:52PM

The field/players/game aren't static. Location of ball doesn't help one bit in determining infield fly.

While there is nothing explicit about waiting for a fielder to be under the ball, by practice that is probably the most reliable way to judge ordinary effort. You try calling infield fly without that and chances are it won't work out too well for you on the field.

tmac said...

I'm curious if the SS heard sammy yell "INFIELD FLY" and that's why he moved off the ball!

MLB network had a long discussion with Harold Reynolds, Omar Vizquel and billy ripken. Seems like reynolds says this is called all the time in MLB and brought video to prove it while that does not make the call correct, I am still saying this is the correct call.

very interesting play to say the least!

Anonymous said...

The point that we are attempting to make on the timing of the call is the fact that if it takes that long to determine if a fielder can make an ORDINARY effort at catching the ball, then it is obviously not an ORDINARY effort.

Holbrook was defeated by his positioning and the fact it was the only time he was in that position all year. From where he is, it is difficult for him to determine how much effort the shortstop is having to put into the play...this call should have been Nelson's as Holbrook cannot have the proper judgement on the play.

If you interpret the rules, the call technically could be made after the ball hits the ground, but as I said, if you have to wait that long, then it is obviously not ordinary effort. Maybe the rule leaves the umpire too much discretion and needs to be tightened up or redone that it only goes in effect for it's intended purpose and not as a way to harm the offense.

Anonymous said...

Exactly..thank you

Anonymous said...

Anonymous @ 6:57 PM

I never said they were static. Nor did I intend to imply that.

Look at the definition of ordinary: "What is commonplace or standard."

Holbrook should know by now "what is commonplace or standard" without having to wait *that* long. That is the point. He applied the inverse ... unordinary.

Russ said...

video and transcript of Fredi Gonzelez Post Game Press Conference.

http://mlb.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20121005&content_id=39518636&vkey=news_mlb&c_id=mlb

Anonymous said...

Try figuring out an IFF on a windy day. The reason people think it has to be called early is because if we have bad timing and don't take time to read the infielders we call it too early. There is no cut and dried stipulation other than what and when an umpire determines to be ordinary effort.

DMay said...

If the ump does not call IFF, would anyone be screaming about a missed call? I just don't think the player could have made a routine play.

Anonymous said...

The purpose of the rule is to protect the offense. You're missing the point of the rule in your little commonplace/standard demo.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous @ 7:07 PM

That would be valid if it were "a windy day" in Atlanta. Wind is currently blowing @ 1 mph which is consistent with game time conditions, also.

In fact, you can tell that there was hardly any wind with how the debris remained constant on the field and didn't blow around at all.

Anonymous said...

What exactly was un-ordinary about the play? The shortstop slowed down and drifted towards the spot at the end before he ran away. It wasn't like he was running full sprint, back towards the infield to get there.

Is it distance? Because that would be a "arbitrary limitation" on the infielder

Anonymous said...

Anonymous @ 7:09 PM

Then maybe they should use a word that is more accurate with the intention? Or does the MLB have their own dictionary that gets passed around to only those in the know?

You're missing the point if you believe figurative trumps literal. Actually, you're just choosing to ignore the point. But hey, we all have the right to be wrong.

tmac said...

Saying Holbrook made the call late and saying it is incorrect not b/c it is incorrect but b/c it is late defies logic to me. It's either the correct call or not. Also to the person who sid it has to be called earlier so the runners can tag up ... i don't remember a guy ever taging up on an infield fly

happy umpiring!

Anonymous said...

http://mlb.mlb.com/video/play.jsp?content_id=25335511&topic_id=37973554&c_id=mlb

Start at :05

"Back is Kozma, he'll take it, oh!!!....(all hell breaks loose)

Even the announcers thought it was routine during the play itself.

FanBoy2012 said...

My thought is that it is incorrect due to not being ordinary effort, and the lack of ordinary effort is evident by the lateness of the call.

Anonymous said...

Regardless... this is a good illustration of how the rule itself is just a bad rule. So fielders could purposely drop a ball... so what? Don't like that? Then don't pop fly.

Anonymous said...

tmac:

I, for the record, am not saying that the call was incorrect. I am just arguing that the definition of "ordinary effort" should provide a sooner judgment call than what was made.

That term literally means: "What is a commonplace or standard effort". Holbrook should have been able to determine well before he did that it was such.

A shortstop waving his arms should not, by default, provide for a judgment of "infield fly" unless Holbrook knows *where* the ball is in the air (if one cannot figure out why, then they cannot be helped). If he knows the latter, he should not have to wait that late to make the call (read: "Can the shortstop reasonably make that play? Yes. Infield fly.") That is what the rule states in high level.

And that is *my* only argument.

Anonymous said...

Here is a satellite photo of Turner Field's new infield dimensions: http://i.imgur.com/O4yEq.jpg

Anonymous said...

Holbrook I guess is supposed to speak after O's-Rangers game is over on TBS. However, Infield Fly Rule can be called in the outfield but there is no way they can say that it was a routine play. Just a bad call by Sam.

tmac said...

@ anon 7:37 that is pretty funny!!

@anon 7:22 thanks I appreciate the thought out discussion!! The rules are always evolving!! I feel like the IF rule is one that needs tweeking but i don't have an answer as to how!



Anonymous said...

Ordinary effort in the big leagues is different than ordinary effort in a high school game. Let's keep that in mind...

BAMF said...

Food for thought. From ESPN:
"To put Friday's controversial play into context, in the past three seasons, there were six infield flies that were not caught, according to Baseball Info Solutions, the longest of which was measured at 178 feet.
Friday's infield fly was measured at 225 feet from home plate, according to Baseball Info Solutions."

Anonymous said...

Holy crap people. Timing was right and call was correct. I don't know why "having his feet under him" comes into play here. That doesn't mean he couldn't have made this catch with ordinary effort, that's ALL that matters. Kozma throws his hands out to his side, starts to pull up, THEN Sam makes the call. Perfect timing. Not his problem, or anyone else's for that matter, that Kozma takes off because he hears footsteps behind him. He still COULD have made that play with ordinary effort, and to think differently is way overthinking he rule.

Anonymous said...

Lost in the kerfuffle over the infield fly rule call was the fact that Jeff Kellogg had a great game behind the plate.

Anonymous said...

The purpose of the rule is to prevent the infielder, on a routine play, from looking at the runners' position and deciding to drop the ball if they're tagging. Kozma's calling it *and* facing the infield, where he could see the runners' position.

Let's put it another way. If Holliday were three steps closer, he'd have been able to force the runner at third and perhaps start a double play (probably not, but maybe). If Kozma bails and they turn the 7-5-4 double play, Fredi Gonzalez is - I guarantee you - out there screaming that it should have been an infield fly.

Anonymous said...

I don't think that if the IFF was not called there would have been arguments from either side no matter the scenario.

Anonymous said...

In the 7-5-4 scenario, Kozma's decision to bail on that ball becomes highly suspect, and you get the argument.

Bryan said...

As charles Barkley would say: Im sorry america.

Anonymous said...

Correct call, end of story.

Ben B. said...

Hey folks, just an ordinary baseball fan, not an umpire, wandered onto this site for the first time. Thought I'd throw something out there. I'm curious about the usage of three different words that keep coming up a lot. Infield. Ordinary. Camped.

1) Infield. I imagine that a lot of folks are curious, like me, about how a rule called the INFIELD Fly Rule can apply to a situation that occurred, like, 80 feet into the outfield.

2) Ordinary. Following from #1: How can a play in which Kozma is running way out of the infield into the outfield be considered one in which he is making an ORDINARY effort? It's the INFIELD Fly Rule. My intuitive reaction is that this wasn't a play on which he was making an ORDINARY effort. Ordinary implies something similar to routine. Surely this was not a ball which could be said to have been one we would see routinely fielded by the short stop. Sometimes sure, but it wasn't a gimme play. Dude had to sprint out there for it. Which leads to point three.

3) CAMPED. I most often hear this word used as part of the phrase CAMPED OUT, as in well-established, or having been in place for a while. It conjures the image of somebody sleeping on the sidewalk in advance of a Star Wars opening or drooling on their magazine at the DMV. Obviously there's some kind of idiomatic usage here, but even if the word CAMPED means something more nuanced in the argot of umpiring, it's hard to argue that Kozma squared himself meaningfully toward the infield. If you'll watch the clip above, he's still sidestepping/backpedaling at the very moment he starts to move away from the ball. Homeboy never CAMPED.

Russ said...

Two great plate jobs by Kellogg and Darling. They are consistently two of the best in the game behind the plate

BAPACop said...

@Ben B.: You should read the rule, which is located in the post at the top of this page. Despite its name, the infield fly rule does not require the ball to be located in the infield.

Jared said...

Hi Ben! I'll try and answer in the order you asked.

1) "Infield" pertains to the fielder rather than an arbitrary spot on the playing field. It's all about infielders. "Infield Fly" may better be described in its non-abridged form as "Infielder Fly."

2) "Ordinary Effort" is "the effort that a fielder of average skill at a position in that league or classification of leagues should exhibit on a play, with due consideration given to the condition of the field and weather conditions." At the MLB level, this is ordinary effort. It's not that the play itself is ordinary, it's that Kozma's journey into the outfield and getting to area of the ball constituted "ordinary effort" as defined above. He wasn't exerting himself getting there (e.g., sprinting or diving).

3) Camped is really slang terminology for simply getting to a spot in the vicinity of where you think a ball will land. You can see Kozma is camping under the ball by his body language, arm movements, his gesticulating and side-to-side movement. He's not running back as in tracking the ball anymore, he is now adjusting his position in order to get ready to catch the ball when it lands. Camped is not officially part of the rule, but it is a concept used to establish whether IFR exists. If a player is camping under a ball and adjusting his position in anticipation of it, he is making an "ordinary effort" as in #2.

Hope that makes sense. SS ranges back, goes from tracking to camping and at the last minute for whatever reason runs away from the ball, causing it to drop. Still constitutes infield fly by strict interpretation of the rule though.

Anonymous said...

Just for the record, Kozma himself said that he was camped under it and thought it was the right call.

Bryan said...

You know what funny about this, the majority of the world thinks this call was incorrect, except Harold Reynolds of mlb network? Someone explain this. This man knows a lot about baseball. Said at least 50 times they got the call right?

Bryan said...

Whether Charlie and Joe demanded Jeff and Sam to come to the presser, still, this is a good start to hold the umps accountable in some form i think. Sam handled the situation great, Kellogg is great, and Jeff Nelson will one day be a great CC along with Dan Bellino

Harlan said...

How are we not talking about Kellogg's last minute granting of time? That was a clear violation of 6.02(b), and, as such, was a protestable offense. “Umpires WILL NOT call “Time” at the request of the batter or any member of his team once the pitcher has started his windup or has come to a set position." It has gotten so bad with regard to this rule that even Mike Matheny in his mid-game interview did not understand that Kellogg screwed up. This is a huge threat to player safety. One of these days, a pitcher will be mid-windup when he hears time being called, abandons his throwing motion and tears an ACL.

Anonymous said...

If that's the way you umpire... to simply make the call that avoids the argument, then remind me never to work with you. Everyone on here is making waaaayyyyy too much fuss over what is a very simple play for anyone who's had any kind of formal umpire training. There is not an MiLB umpire out here either that disagrees with the call. This is textbook IFF, except for the part where Kozma started running away, which has NO BEARING ON THIS PLAY! I NEVER compliment the media, but listen to Harold! He seems to be the only one who gets it!

Anonymous said...

Very well done Jared,

If only 90% of this thread could grasp these (what I thought were simple) rules!

Anonymous said...

Up until three hours ago, MLB's twitter account (@MLB) read "Official Twitter of Major League Baseball. We don't understand the infield fly rule, either. Our lawyers made us post sweepstakes rules"

After the call, the MLB profile has been modified to read "Official Twitter of Major League Baseball. Our lawyers made us post sweepstakes rules"

Anonymous said...

Ok Harlan...go back to tuning your piano now. Every pitcher at the MLB level knows to throw the ball regardless so save all your drama for something that matters. You, like many plumbers on here, don't know what's actually protestable regarding the rules.

Anonymous said...

Ditto Anon 12:20...i love all the "path of least resistance" umpires that come on here and say it would be better to just let it go. Really? These guys get paid to make the tough, unpopular calls. It's their job. I've met Sam Holbrook and he's one of the top guys in the game and a great guy. If you ever met Sam you would know he's not going down the path of least resistance.

Anonymous said...

And?

Anonymous said...

Nice job Jared

Cricket said...

Well, this post blew up...

Again, I am really on the fence about this call. I cannot really blame Holbrook because I have made a similar call in a 2-man before (although the infielder at least attempted to catch it in my situation).

But, truly, I am not really that pissed about it in the long run because the Braves gave away 5 runs with pathetic errors. Another season down the shitter.

Anonymous said...

SS feet never stop moving, 40 feet in the Outfield is not ordinary effort. If this isn't called an IFF is anyone complaining over a no-call? Guaranteed NO on that one.

Anonymous said...

SS did indeed stop moving. When he threw his hands up in the air with his chest facing the infield he demonstrated ordinary effort. The plumbers on here are all hung up on how far he had to run to get there. It's irrelevant.

Anonymous said...

At 225 feet, that was quite likely the longest IFF in MLB history. Recall that Bobby Thompson's "Shot Heard 'Round the World" crossed a fence that was about 25 feet further away

ANON = LMD1953

Anonymous said...

In watching the video Sam Holbrook does not make the indication of Infield Fly until after the shortstop has pulled off the ball and is retreating towards the infield. At no point was the shortstop ever under the baseball with ordinary effort. Having to run 225 feet, partially backwards is no ordinary effort. And his hands are up not to indicate that he will catch the ball with ordinary effort, but to keep Matt Holliday from running over him like a bus. Also, watch Third Base Umpire Jeff Nelson, he never indicates Infield Fly until after the ball is on the ground more indicative of "what the heck are you thinking" and so Holbrooks statement that all the umpires agreed to a "T" in the press conference is not accurate either. I like Sam Holbrook as an umpire but he is done for the postseason and will probably never be able to umpire again in Atlanta.

Harlan said...

Just because no one has yet to protest a game for an umpire's blatant unwillingness to enforce 6.02(b) doesn't mean they couldn't in the future. Baseball practice does not trump the rulebook.

Harlan said...

Am I the only one that thinks when the rulebook says "Umpires will not" that umpires should then adjust their behavior accordingly?

Anonymous said...

I think the high school interpretation of the IFF is the most idiotic thing in organized baseball. Here we have baseball being played at its highest level in the post season with five umpires on the field and there is great disagreement on what constituted an IFF. And high school kids are supposed to "know" an IFF situation EVEN IF the ump doesn't call it. Maybe we can expect them to "know" when a strike should have been called and act accordingly, even if the ump was too ignorant to make the correct call then. How stupid is that?

How's about this for an IFF tweak - let the play play itself out. If the ump calls it an IFF AND the defense lets the ball drop, then they are only entitled to one "force out". If they don't get one (like last night), everybody is safe. Once they get an out, the ball is dead and all runners are given the base they were being "forced" to go to. That is the precise intent of the IFF rule and it would generally make the defense catch the darn ball. If it falls in, then the ump probably erred in ordinary effort assessment and the offense doesn't end up getting screwed by having the B/R being "automatically" out. Simple as pie.

ANON = LMS1953


Scott Stevenson said...

Anon @6:14p, 6:37p, 4:44a, 6:21a

Thank you. It's been my experience in the past year or so that anybody who uses "plumber", "rat", "piano tuner", or any sort of variation is making a content free post--especially if they're hiding behind an anonymous login.

You've kept that streak alive. Well done.

DMay said...

But it does require ordinary effort. I still stand by the opposite argument, if IFF was not called. Who complains? No one. That makes the call bad. No ST Louis player or manager comes out to argue. Ducks on the pond, one out.

Anonymous said...

@DMay:
So because you don't think anyone would complain if the opposite was called, it makes it a bad call? This is idiotic.

This was the right call, and it just shows how little people know about the rules when a weird rule situation comes up.

-Zac

Anonymous said...

You're wrong.

Anonymous said...

Really Scott? Maybe they are pointing out the ignorance of the rulebook as it pertains to a specific play by some of the plumbers, rats, and piano tuners who post on here.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous @ 1:25 pm:

No, you guys just sound like morons by the overuse of "rat", "plumbler" and "piano tuner". Might as well just "nanny nanny, boo boo!" as it's just as childish.

Anonymous said...

What they fail to realize is that the players and fans pay their salary - calling them rats and plumbers is pretty idiotic.

Ben B. said...

@Jared - That was a really well-articulated, easy to follow explanation. Thanks for taking the time to break it down for me! I think I get it now. Cheers.

Anonymous said...

He is not a PLUMBER, he is dead on. There is no such thing as an infield fly beyond the baseline! That was call was horrible and Holbrook has no business working ANY playoff games EVER. And he never would with his performance during the regular season if it wasn't for the damn contract that says everyone has to be given a chance to work. LOOK IT UP!! We have to deal with scum ass umpires making these calls when it matters. No I am not crazy Braves fan. I worked with Holbrook in the minors and he was not that good then, but it is who he knew in the BIG show that got him there not his talent or that fat GUT OF HIS that he still has, which should be show that he did not get because of appearance or ability.

Anonymous said...

You mean you worked as a peanut vendor while he umpired in the minors? Because with that display of ignorance, there's little wonder why Holbrook is in the show while you're umpiring from your arm chair.

Anonymous said...

As demonstrated time & time again by multiple sources, the call was right. Time to move on

DMay said...

In your opinion, do you believe the play met the ordinary effort part of the rule? I do not. And my argument about a NO call does make sense. Do you believe ST Louis comes out and discusses why the IFF rule is not called, I say NO.

BAPACop said...

@DMay: No, your argument about a no-call does NOT make sense. The infield fly rule does not say "An Infield Fly is a fair fly ball which can be caught by an ordinary infielder with ordinary effort, when first and second, or first second and third bases are occupied, before two are out, and when the other team will complain if it's not called." I do agree with you in one respect; if the infield fly rule is not called here then the other team would not have complained. But whether or not the other team will complain about a call if it's not made never has anything to do with if the call is correct or not.

Thus the ordinary effort part is the part we need to look at. This is the part of the rule that is most subject to judgement. The shortstop was not sprinting to approach the ball and he set himself as if he was preparing to catch the ball. The video appears to show Holbrook start to signal for the infield fly immediately as the shortstop sets himself. This makes me think that he felt that if the shortstop had time to move out (and did not have to do so in a hurried manner) and take a set position under the ball that it fell under ordinary effort.

I am of the opinion that this call could have gone either way and still have been correct. It could be considered out-of-the-ordinary because of the distance covered (even though the rule does not require the ball to be located in the infield, the shortstop did make quite a journey into the outfield) but it could also be considered ordinary (because despite the distance the shortstop did not have to sprint, lunge, dive, etc. to make it to the ball in time and would have been able to make the catch easily from a stand-still had he not bailed on it).

Anonymous said...

Whatever dude!!

Anonymous said...

Another guy that got released so now he's pissed at Sam. You are a plumber. Deal with it. The level of ignorance regarding the rules on this forum is nauseating.

Anonymous said...

No such thing as infield fly beyond the baseline? Ha! You really expect us to believe anything you say after that?

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