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Wild Walk-Off - Analysis of 6 Rules for 1 Play in Houston

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The final play of Houston's walk-off victory over Oakland Tuesday featured an overcharged bouncing ball and at least six rules situations for HP Umpire David Rackley to quickly consider as A's catcher Jonathan Lucroy and Astros batter Alex Bregman danced around home plate before Lucroy finally...

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Another rule to consider is actually an interpretation found in the PBUC, the MiLBUM and BRD—

A batter-runner retreating toward the plate is out if he touches or runs beyond the plate.

Can’t state definitively that the batter-runner did retreat beyond the plate but it looks like a possibility.

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wonder if anyone would comment on this wrinkle

 

if Bregman, upon seeing the ball rolling back fair, starts towards first and he and Lucroy contact, would this be a "tangle and untangle" play on call?  I guess to what extent the contact effected Lucroy would matter?

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57 minutes ago, stkjock said:

wonder if anyone would comment on this wrinkle

 

if Bregman, upon seeing the ball rolling back fair, starts towards first and he and Lucroy contact, would this be a "tangle and untangle" play on call?  I guess to what extent the contact effected Lucroy would matter?

IMHO, the closest rule to being violated was the interference rule by the batter-runner.  In this case, I do NOT think the "tangle and untangle" rule would apply. 

The unofficially named Barnett rule (which holds that it is not interference if the catcher is doing what he is supposed to be doing (a/k/a attempting to field the ball) and the batter-runner is doing what he is supposed to be doing (a/k/a running to first base) and they collide/tangle/etc.) applies only when both guys are doing what they are supposed to be doing.

In this case, the batter-runner came to a complete stop (presumably because he thought the ball was going to be foul...see the 2-3 second mark of the video posted on UEFL).  When a batter-runner stops, he is "not doing what he is supposed to be doing".  Thus, if the catcher had made contact (or simply been hindered) while attempting to field the ball as a result of the batter having stopped, that would be interference and the "Barnett rule exception" to the interference rule would not apply.

There have been numerous posts (including videos) on UEFL over the last two years showing the difference between a play where the Barnett rule applies and where it does not (because the batter-runner stopped running to first base or did some type of hesitation to intentionally try to hinder F2).

[To be honest, having watched the beginning of the video over-and-over...I think a case could be made that the B/R having stopped may have caused F2 to have to go around the B/R to pick up the ball.  If so, this would be hindering and interference (and because the B/R "stopped" the Barnett rule would not apply).  To me this is a very, very close call.  I'm not saying Rackley got it wrong...but, I am saying that if he had called interference, I could fully support that call, too.  It is a very, very close call.)

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On 7/11/2018 at 2:54 AM, Senor Azul said:

Another rule to consider is actually an interpretation found in the PBUC, the MiLBUM and BRD—

A batter-runner retreating toward the plate is out if he touches or runs beyond the plate.

Can’t state definitively that the batter-runner did retreat beyond the plate but it looks like a possibility.

The angle at 1:07 shows him coming very close to, but not quite passing, the third base line....I'm assuming that foul line, including 3bx, would be the point at which he is beyond the plate?

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6 hours ago, beerguy55 said:

 

The angle at 1:07 shows him coming very close to, but not quite passing, the third base line....I'm assuming that foul line, including 3bx, would be the point at which he is beyond the plate?

The MLBUM added some interesting geometric lines to their passing a base in the last year or two. But they did not include HP. Most likely he would have touched HP if he did not slide slightly into the infield but he did not and did not pass it. 

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