Thursday, July 4, 2013

Infield Fly Rule Knowledge Costs Giants as Reds Turn Two

Brandon Phillips took advantage of the infield fly rule to turn a double play, thanks in great part to the Giants baserunner's apparent lapse of rules knowledge. With one out and two on (R1, R2), Giants batter Hunter Pence hit a 0-1 fastball from Reds pitcher Tony Cingrani to Phillips at second as 2B Umpire Bill Welke called
Diagramed play: Infield Fly called, mirrored.
"infield fly," judging that infielder Phillips could catch the fair fly ball with ordinary effort. Phillips allowed the ball to drop untouched in front of him, fielded the ball and threw to shortstop Zack Cozart, who tagged Giants baserunner Buster Posey, who had taken off for second base, unaware of the rule's invocation.

Pursuant to Rule 2.00 (Infield Fly), the ball remained alive and baserunners Gregor Blanco (R2) and Buster Posey (R1) were permitted to advance at their own risk. Batter Pence was declared out upon Welke's declaration of "Infield Fly."

Phillips camps, Welke calls, Blanco tags.
Replays indicate Welke's mechanized infield fly signal was immediately mirrored by 1B Umpire Fieldin Culbreth and HP Umpire Brian O'Nora (3B Umpire Adrian Johnson was not visible in replay angles shown on either broadcast) and that Welke's call preceded Posey's attempt at advancement; Posey had retreated to first base and took of for second upon the dropped ball, apparently unaware of the umpire's call.

Though all broadcast crews credited Phillips with a heads up play, San Francisco's Jon Miller had his own take on who dropped the ball (figuratively): "1B Coach Roberto Kelly should be just screaming it out to Buster and I also did not see 3B Coach Tim Flannery [call to Blanco]."

The Cincinnati Reds, leading 1-0 at the time, ultimately won the contest in walk-off fashion in extra innings.

Brandon Phillips has shown his baseball smarts before, as pertains to the infield fly rule. In 2010, he turned the trick, perhaps accidentally, against St. Louis after Cardinals batter Matt Holliday popped up to Phillips in shallow right. 2B Umpire Mike Reilly called for an infield fly as the ball fell untouched, Phillips fielding the ball and throwing to second base where Orlando Cabrera stepped on the bag. Mistakenly thinking he had been forced out, baserunner R1 Albert Pujols left first base and headed for the Cards' dugout as Cabrera tagged him for the final out of the inning. (Video: Phillips engineers double play.)

Video: After infield fly call, Phillips allows ball to drop untouched, doubles up the running Posey (CIN)

14 comments :

Gil Imber said...

Just another reason why DATDUDE is the best second baseman in the league.

Gil Imber said...

I bet the giants broadcast was comical.

Gil Imber said...

I think Robinson Cano might have something to say to what you said.

Gil Imber said...

Except Mr. Cano plays in the American league whereas Mr. Phillips plays in the National league.

Gil Imber said...

I know I think when Arik said league was the MLB

Gil Imber said...

Both Giants broadcasts picked it up right away ("pop up to Phillies, they call the infield fly rule...the ball drops and Posey's going to try and advance!"), but didn't seem to notice that the mechanic was mirrored by U1, U3 and PU. There was some discussion about Welke not being passionate enough about the call and/or the other umpires not yelling it too (because surely our broadcasters have read the mechanics books for PBUC and MLBU). I think the Reds radio picked it up pretty quickly, but as you saw on the TV, Brennaman totally missed the infield fly call.

The best part of the Giants radio was as soon as Jon Miller finishes chastising Roberto Kelly and Tim Flannery for not doing their jobs, they throw to commercial break and the first thing on is a station bump: "Hi, this is Tim Flannery and you're listening to KNBR."

Gil Imber said...

Everitt tossed Buck for arguing a check swing. Ron Darling, like always, first of all gets the umpire wrong (he said Tim Welke had rabbit ears) and then whines. He is a joke and a whiner.

Gil Imber said...

Not related to the good call here, but the infield fly rule needs to
go. It's the worse example of a 'stitch up rule' there is. If someone
pops up in the infield, let it be their fault, don't try to fix it with a
silly rule.

Gil Imber said...

The rule exists to protect the offense, not give the defense a free out.

Gil Imber said...

I know, that's my point. Protect them from what? How a batter hits it is his fault. Let the defense drop it on purpose and get the double play. Don't like it? Then don't pop it up in the infield. The rule is meddling.

Gil Imber said...

I was. And I believe a strong case could be made for both mine and Mania's statements.

Gil Imber said...

Foolish comment. Let's see what happens when the bases are juiced and there is a pop-up. Defense would win every time.

Gil Imber said...

What part of "that's my point," don't you get? The "defense wins" because the batter popped it up (that's the batter's fault). Don't like it? Don't pop up.

Also, the "foolish" part of your comment was immature and childish. We should be able to have disagreements on this site with assigning value judgements to the 'foolishness' of a particular viewpoint.

Gil Imber said...

The problem is it would happen way too often and change the game way too much. The pop-up would become by far the worst result in baseball because it would be basically a guaranteed double play no matter where it was with two runners on. With the bases loaded, the entire strategy would be to try and get out of the inning with one pitch by getting the guy to pop out. Rules were made to "meddle" with situations that would otherwise provide unbalanced or uninteresting results. The pop-up being the most important play in the game, no thanks.

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