“This will actually ruin baseball if not addressed” “Go back to no rule, let there be collisions”

During the Cleveland Guardians versus Detroit Tigers game yesterday, catcher Austin Hedges was involved in a controversial call behind the plate. Tigers shortstop Javier Baez was initially called out at the plate as it appeared Hedges tagged him. However, the call was ruled in violation of the new obstruction rule, and the run scored.

After appearing to get Javy Baez out at the plate, replay overturned the call due to Austin Hedges blocking the plate https://t.co/TUsJj4WJPK

The Guardians ended up losing the game 4-3, partly owing to the reverse call. The play happened with two outs in the first inning. With Baez out, the inning should have ended. Instead, Kerry Carpenter hit a two-run shot the next at-bat, putting Cleveland down 3-0 in the first.

@JomboyMedia Are you kidding me!! Just seeing this play now. This was absolutely ATROCIOUS. What is hedges supposed to do here differently?

@JomboyMedia This was easily the worst one called so far. Baez was already sliding on the outside 😂😂

After that three-run debacle in the first, the Guardians put up a run in the bottom of the inning. The Tigers put up one more in the third, but then went scoreless for the remainder of the game. Cleveland tried to make a comeback by scoring in the seventh and eighth innings but ultimately fell short.

Before the obstruction rule was implemented in 2014, catchers were allowed to block the plate, and runners could truck the catcher. However, many argued that it risked too much injury for the players. Now, a runner cannot run into the catcher, and the catcher must give the runner a clear path to the plate.

@JomboyMedia This will actually ruin baseball if not addressed

@JomboyMedia Catcher was blocking the plate before they had the ball. Not sure what the runner is supposed to do if they don’t have a path to the plate? https://t.co/2h6n3Qenlz

This is where things get controversial, because it appears that the clear path rules vary by umpire. Some are more lenient than others. This then confuses fans watching the game, and no one fully understands.

@JomboyMedia Posey and Utley rules need to go. If you want the smoke stay in if not get out of the way.

@JomboyMedia This is the epitome of rules gone wild. The catcher did everything he was supposed to which is why the play was so close. Baez had a clear path to the plate. We see more blocking of the bag by middle infielders than this. Don’t root for either team but this is a bad call.

Now, Austin Hedges is not the only catcher this has happened to this season. Fans want it addressed, because it can cost games.

Austin Hedges is one of many catchers affected by rule

Boston Red Sox v Cleveland Guardians
Boston Red Sox v Cleveland Guardians

Earlier this week, the San Diego Padres were victims of the same overturn. In the seventh inning in a game against the Washington Nationals, a call at the plate got overturned in Washington’s favor. This ultimately caused San Diego to lose a crucial game to the Nationals.

@JomboyMedia A lot of these lately it seems. I agree with the overturn on this one. C’s left foot is planted in foul territory and body is in fair when receiving the throw. Throw pulled him to fair territory so he shouldn’t have been in foul territory until he had possession.

Major League Baseball should look into the logistics of this rule a little bit more. If they are going to keep the obstruction rule, every umpire needs to enforce it with the same consistency. There should be zero gray area when it comes to a rule in baseball.


Edited by Jodi Whisenhunt

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