Mariners Insider

Umpires explanation for the “obstruction” call

Post by Todd Dybas / The News Tribune on May 14, 2013 at 8:54 pm with 6 Comments »
May 14, 2013 8:57 pm

Here is the full explanation on the “obstruction” call against Felix Hernandez in the fourth inning:

Jerry Layne (HP Umpire and Crew Chief) and Hunter Wendelstedt (3B Umpire):

Q: Can you comment on the play?

Layne: Any time you have an obstruction before first base, you have a rule.

Wendelstedt: It’s 7.06a

Layne: Any time the runner is obstructed before first base, the ball is dead. He’s awarded first base, and any runner that could be forced is awarded [his base]. That’s why [Wells] was given second base. What had happened was when they went to field the ball, the pitcher and the first baseman were going toward the bag. There was a second there when neither one of them knew who was going to cover, in my opinion. I don’t know that, but that’s what it looked like. But the person that didn’t receive the ball, which was the pitcher, obstructed the runner going to first base. Per that rule, any time it happens before first base, the ball is dead. That clarifies it. Eric [Wedge] said it didn’t happen before first base, and that’s what the discussion was about.

Q: Did it make a difference that the runner was out by two steps?

Wendelstedt: We have a clarification in the baseball rules interpretation manual. Only one fielder can be in the act of fielding the ball. Now that fielder [in this case] was the first baseman. So that’s where the obstruction came in because there were multiple fielders fielding the [throw]. Now there’s a couple of different kinds of obstruction. But on the type of play like this, which was a ground ball, it doesn’t matter if the runner is 89 feet away when he gets obstructed or if he’s one inch away. If he is obstructed before first base, the ball is dead and he is awarded first base.

Layne: As soon as that happens, the play is dead.

Leave a comment Comments → 6
  1. bbnate420 says:

    Any explanation of how the umpire expected to be able to call balls and strikes with his head buried firmly inside his rectum?

  2. bbnate420 says:

    Let’s revisit that great Doug Fister trade:

    Wells-Sucked and off the team.

    Ruffin-Contributed nothing thus far and trying to reinvent himself into a starter in AA.

    Furbush-Sucked his first year here. Good second year. 5.40 era in 2013. Jury still out. Could be decent reliever.

    Martinez-Hitting .183 with a .432 OPS in AA. Has sucked like a leach his entire stint here.

  3. Skysport says:

    Exactly what I figured: the umps explanations were as hokey as the call. “You see, the guy was over there and the ball was here and my wife was over there and there was a giant ape climbing up the Empire State Building and so that’s why it was interference.” Yeah….right.

    On Baseball Tonight the hosts were completely flabbergasted by the strike call on Morse to end the game. That makes it unanimous.

  4. BBN, we agree 100% about the Fister trade. I was complaining about it from day 1.

  5. Palerydr says:

    We have 3 potential trade chips in Morales, Morse and Iwakuma. If we are a .500 team around the deadline I see no reason to hang onto these guys moving forward. The Fister trade and Cliff Lee trade have been less than stellar for our side. Jack Z really needs to be sure that he’s getting good value if he decides to trade these guys. However I don’t want a team that is continually putting young players with “potential” on the field either waiting for those players to develop. I want productive players and I want them now!

    The Umpire calling balls and strikes last night was AWFUL! Cano should have struck out and we probably win that game last night. One blown pitch call turned a win into a loss.

  6. bbnate420 says:

    I think Morales gets traded, but I’d hang on to Morse and Iwakuma personally. I think both can be important contributors in the coming years. Morales is a Boras player and likely won’t be resigned.

    I’d like to see them try and get Morse signed to a 3-4 year extension for less than 10 mil a year. He can play first if need be and we hardly have a glut of good OFs. There are no good OF prospects to speak of in the high minors. He is a good hitter, something this team sorely needs. With Guti likely gone after 2013, you still have 1 OF spot to fill even if you bring Morse back.

    I don’t think this team can afford to trade away another top-tier starting pitcher. This team needs Iwakuma.

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