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Infield fly

Guest Mrumpiresir


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This one from 2012? 

Here is write up from that time that (at quick glance) looks to be a good summary. https://bleacherreport.com/articles/1360712-cardinals-vs-braves-infield-fly-rule-protest-denied-as-umpires-get-call-right

tl;dr: It's judgmental, is level of play dependent, and the fielder doesn't have to be in the "infield".

So, if you need an unequivocal "yes" or "no" 10 years later for whatever reason, then it's "yes".


Text of the rule for completeness:

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.

There is much more written about it in the rulebook and secondary sources but that's the direct rule.

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43 minutes ago, Guest Mrumpiresir said:

Was the infield fly call correct in the wildcard game between St. Louis and Atlanta

Depends on what you're asking.

Did they get it right by rule?  Yes...and in fact, that was confirmed as the game was play under protest, which was denied - the umpires' administration of the call was affirmed.

There were runners on first and second, there were less than two outs, and the umpire judged that the fly ball could be caught be an infielder with ordinary effort.


Did they get it right by judgment?  Well...that's judgment.  And by rule, the umpire's judgment is, with few exceptions, beyond reproach.  It can't be disputed or argued, and is, by definition, always "right"...even if the umpire, upon further discussion and consideration, changes his mind, it's his decision to make, and, by definition, his final judgment is always "right".

Beyond the checked swing appeal, the only exception to this is the leagues that allow instant replay review.

IFF is one of the many judgment calls in MLB that cannot be reviewed under instant replay.  So, even under today's rules, the umpire's judgment was right.


But, I think anyone with two working eyes, a degree of common sense, an IQ above room temperature, and who isn't a die hard Braves fan, (but I repeat myself) can honesty see that this fly ball could have easily been caught by an infielder with ordinary effort.   

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