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Heave the Hawk? When a Broadcast Misinforms


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What happens when a teams' TV broadcast doesn't see a play or know a rule? Unfortunately, as was the case with a Chicago Cubs vs White Sox game featuring Hawk Harrelson in 2007, it often results in derision of the umpires, even when the umpires get the call right. Joe West may have ejected Ozzie...

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According to U-E’s brain trust the umpires in this game completely misapplied the rules. They say that a Type 2 obstruction is killed as soon as the obstructed runner is tagged out. The umpires were C.B. Bucknor behind the plate, Joe West at first, Ed Rapuano at second, and Ed Hickox at third.

Because this was a Type 2 obstruction with the White Sox shortstop obstructing R1 Angel Pagan while the ball was in the outfield, the play was properly allowed to continue. But here is where they went horribly wrong. The obstructed runner R1 was then tagged out returning to second base so our resident experts say the play should have been killed at that point—the second tagout between home and third base should never have happened—right? But that is not how it was ruled. I wonder why?

Since the game in question happened in June 2007 perhaps the rule interpretation has changed since then. If there was a change in the way this rule is applied then it is also a mistake on Gil Imber’s part to not mention that in his analysis. I can understand and accept that the White Sox broadcast team got this all wrong but four MLB umpires and two managers to get it wrong is totally unacceptable.

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2 hours ago, Senor Azul said:

According to U-E’s brain trust the umpires in this game completely misapplied the rules. They say that a Type 2 obstruction is killed as soon as the obstructed runner is tagged out. The umpires were C.B. Bucknor behind the plate, Joe West at first, Ed Rapuano at second, and Ed Hickox at third.

Because this was a Type 2 obstruction with the White Sox shortstop obstructing R1 Angel Pagan while the ball was in the outfield, the play was properly allowed to continue. But here is where they went horribly wrong. The obstructed runner R1 was then tagged out returning to second base so our resident experts say the play should have been killed at that point—the second tagout between home and third base should never have happened—right? But that is not how it was ruled. I wonder why?

Since the game in question happened in June 2007 perhaps the rule interpretation has changed since then. If there was a change in the way this rule is applied then it is also a mistake on Gil Imber’s part to not mention that in his analysis. I can understand and accept that the White Sox broadcast team got this all wrong but four MLB umpires and two managers to get it wrong is totally unacceptable.

A now marked as spam poster on CCS confirms that he was trained to call time when the runner was tagged as early as 1997 and Jaska - Roder had that in their manual. The interp to call time definitely existed in my 2004 PBUC.  Whether Rapuano was aware of the interp we don’t know. Stuff happened quick and maybe he was late in processing it. It does show why the interp might have been developed, to avoid confusion such as happened. 

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5 hours ago, Senor Azul said:

According to U-E’s brain trust the umpires in this game completely misapplied the rules. They say that a Type 2 obstruction is killed as soon as the obstructed runner is tagged out. The umpires were C.B. Bucknor behind the plate, Joe West at first, Ed Rapuano at second, and Ed Hickox at third.

Because this was a Type 2 obstruction with the White Sox shortstop obstructing R1 Angel Pagan while the ball was in the outfield, the play was properly allowed to continue. But here is where they went horribly wrong. The obstructed runner R1 was then tagged out returning to second base so our resident experts say the play should have been killed at that point—the second tagout between home and third base should never have happened—right? But that is not how it was ruled. I wonder why?

Since the game in question happened in June 2007 perhaps the rule interpretation has changed since then. If there was a change in the way this rule is applied then it is also a mistake on Gil Imber’s part to not mention that in his analysis. I can understand and accept that the White Sox broadcast team got this all wrong but four MLB umpires and two managers to get it wrong is totally unacceptable.

Wow, used to have respect for Azul, no longer.  My 14 year old son knows to respect fellow umpires and not talk poorly of them to others.

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24 minutes ago, SH0102 said:

Wow, used to have respect for Azul, no longer.  My 14 year old son knows to respect fellow umpires and not talk poorly of them to others.

Good old boy networks can go to hell. There is nothing wrong with discussing the bad with the good no matter where it lies, rookie, grizzled vet, the just starting, and - maybe most importantly - the powerful.  Don't hide poor performance or wrong behavior by anyone. Bring it up, fix it, and get on with it.

MLB umpiring has come a long way but there are still a lot of people wondering why the likes of CB Bucknor and Angel Hernandez have a job that many young, hungry umpires are doing better.

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4 hours ago, SH0102 said:

Wow, used to have respect for Azul, no longer.  My 14 year old son knows to respect fellow umpires and not talk poorly of them to others.

I think @Senor Azul was facetiously implying that our resident experts, me included, were saying that 4 MLB umps got it wrong and possibly we are wrong in saying that. But I only am saying that 1 umpire, U2, did not call time as the MLBUM interp directs and that then caused a lot of confusion which the crew correctly sorted out. They might even had recognized that time should have been called on the tag and thus you then have bases loaded with no outs. CCS rationalizes the runner placement with some round about reasoning and doesn't seem to be aware of the MLBUM interp. CCS usually does not admit to errors and in this case they may have actually marked a comment as spam that points out their error with worthwhile cites. I don't even know if I would be quick enough to apply the MLBUM interp in real time. Even in the WS obstruction call the home plate umpire called safe instead of time and later said he should have called time. Stuff sometimes happens quick. I think @Senor Azul still questions whether the MLBUM interp is correct.

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3 hours ago, Jimurray said:

I think @Senor Azul was facetiously implying that our resident experts, me included, were saying that 4 MLB umps got it wrong and possibly we are wrong in saying that. But I only am saying that 1 umpire, U2, did not call time as the MLBUM interp directs and that then caused a lot of confusion which the crew correctly sorted out. They might even had recognized that time should have been called on the tag and thus you then have bases loaded with no outs. CCS rationalizes the runner placement with some round about reasoning and doesn't seem to be aware of the MLBUM interp. CCS usually does not admit to errors and in this case they may have actually marked a comment as spam that points out their error with worthwhile cites. I don't even know if I would be quick enough to apply the MLBUM interp in real time. Even in the WS obstruction call the home plate umpire called safe instead of time and later said he should have called time. Stuff sometimes happens quick. I think @Senor Azul still questions whether the MLBUM interp is correct.

 

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11 hours ago, Jimurray said:

A now marked as spam poster on CCS confirms that he was trained to call time when the runner was tagged as early as 1997 and Jaska - Roder had that in their manual. 

:wave:

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1 minute ago, lawump said:

:wave:

And just to add to it: I am very, very familiar with that Sox/Cubs play.  I've had it saved as a video file for years as I use it to teach obstruction, type 2.  I have used it for nearly 15-years to teach both (1) that a runner can be protected returning to a base and (2) when to call time on type 2 obstruction.  I have picked apart this video over and over and over again for years.  So, I immediately knew that the reasoning they gave at the end of the play was wrong.

And, this is the second time in two years that I have posted a comment on closecallsports.com pointing out that their interpretation was wrong (or not fully correct)...only to not receive no reply (or, in the case of yesterday, have my post marked as "spam").  I'm done with commenting on their pages.  

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30 minutes ago, lawump said:

And, this is the second time in two years that I have posted a comment on closecallsports.com pointing out that their interpretation was wrong (or not fully correct)...only to not receive no reply (or, in the case of yesterday, have my post marked as "spam").  I'm done with commenting on their pages.  

That's a shame, CCS doesn't seem like a very open forum for actual discussion these days, not sure why they wouldn't engage in discussion with you over a rule interpretation. The videos recently have been less analytical and more sarcastic as of late too, with all the little comments and sound effects. Not a fan.

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3 hours ago, Scissors said:

The videos recently have been less analytical and more sarcastic as of late too, with all the little comments and sound effects. Not a fan.

My adjacent opinion is they are sniffing and becoming envious of the aroma of Jomboy's popularity on YouTube. Viewers don't seem to care if your material is analytical or particularly correct (different than generally correct), they want to be entertained. And Jomboy's videos are entertaining. And of course, YouTube compensates for viewings and click-thrus. Who other than fellow umpires want to hear the minutia of a baseball play that no one other than fellow umpires will understand? Who wants chapter and verse of rulebooks quoted and dissected to them?

Especially in that voice. *shudder* 

A very applicable parallel can be drawn between Top Gear / The Grand Tour / Drive Tribe (whichever entity Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May appear on) and MotorTrend. MotorTrend has always produced factual reviews and analysis of hundreds of automobiles over the years. Top Gear made it entertainment, and enjoys viewership in excess of 350 million viewers across 200-some territories. The material they present is outlandish, only marginally factual, and spilling over with biased opinions, but damn!... is it entertaining.

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3 hours ago, MadMax said:

My adjacent opinion is they are sniffing and becoming envious of the aroma of Jomboy's popularity on YouTube. Viewers don't seem to care if your material is analytical or particularly correct (different than generally correct), they want to be entertained. And Jomboy's videos are entertaining. And of course, YouTube compensates for viewings and click-thrus. Who other than fellow umpires want to hear the minutia of a baseball play that no one other than fellow umpires will understand? Who wants chapter and verse of rulebooks quoted and dissected to them?

True, it seems like popularity is more important at this point than correct rule analyses. It's a shame. 

3 hours ago, MadMax said:

Especially in that voice. *shudder* 

I don't understand what's going on with that. Gil has mentioned it directly several times in videos "I know my voice is terrible, sorry", but won't directly address what's going on. I understand keeping your personal life to yourself but if you keep bringing it up and then ignoring questions about it, that's confusing.

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16 hours ago, Scissors said:

I don't understand what's going on with that. Gil has mentioned it directly several times in videos "I know my voice is terrible, sorry", but won't directly address what's going on. I understand keeping your personal life to yourself but if you keep bringing it up and then ignoring questions about it, that's confusing.

Well, I suspect he's got some kind of nasal issue - broken nose/rhinoplasty/long-haul COVID symptoms/botched hair implants - or they are transitioning.   It's none of our business either way, but we will speculate because we can.  I at first thought he had an assistant doing some of the videos.

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