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Wrong call gives Cubs a 12-inning win over Astros

Sep 16, 2011, 6:39 PM EDT

Chris Johnson

I’m not going to call it a blown call, since it wasn’t at all obvious live.  Nevertheless, Friday’s game at Wrigley ended on a wrong call that gave the Cubs a 4-3 win over the Astros in 12 innings.

The bases were loaded with one out in the bottom of the 12th at the time of the play.  David Carpenter was on the mound for Houston, with Marlon Byrd hitting for the Cubs.  Byrd delivered a swinging bunt down the third base line.  It actually bounced right on the line before Astros third baseman Chris Johnson went to play the hop.  Johnson, standing in foul territory, had the ball go off his glove, at which point the ball kicked up some chalk again.

Watching it live, it did look like a fair ball, which was the ruling from home-plate umpire Jeff Nelson.  However, on slow-motion replay, the ball clearly hit the ground in foul territory while also hitting Johnson’s glove.  It then kicked back into fair territory.

Byrd was awarded the hit, which scored Starlin Castro from third.

Since it was a contest involving a couple of also-rans, there won’t be a whole lot of controversy about this one.  However, the game shouldn’t have ended when it did and the Astros may not have deserved their 99th loss today.

  1. The Baseball Idiot - Sep 16, 2011 at 6:47 PM

    If, as you say, the call looked fair at the time of the play, then it’s not a blown call. It’s a correct call.

    I really enjoy coming to this site and reading about baseball, but the hatchet job you guys are doing on the umpires is getting ridiculous.

    It’s a hard job done by highly trained, highly professional people. Yeah, a few of them are jerks. Just like some baseball bloggers are jerks. You guys have a good readership. Why do you need to troll for clicks with crap like this when you can actually write about the game instead?

    • The Baseball Idiot - Sep 16, 2011 at 6:59 PM

      Sorry, wasn’t implying the guys here are jerks. I was referring to Chase and those guys.

      It would just nice to see you actually write something positive about umpires on occasion, and not resort to yellow journalism.

      • halladaysbiceps - Sep 16, 2011 at 7:04 PM

        Cowboy Joe West and the Heatbreakers: A Love Story.

    • Matthew Pouliot - Sep 16, 2011 at 7:24 PM

      No, it wasn’t a correct call. I said, from my point of view, I initially thought it was a fair ball, too. But it wasn’t.

      There’s no criticism of the umpire here. I thought it was pretty clear I was giving the umpire a free pass on the call… it was so close no one watching it in real time should have been expected to know definitively if it was fair or foul. The purpose of the entry was just to point out that the game wouldn’t have ended the way it did if MLB had a more extensive replay system.

    • normb11 - Sep 17, 2011 at 11:23 AM

      oy vey, you’re the same guy that thinks the one inning separating Lee from Halladay/Kershaw is the same as the 27 separating Carpenter from Vazquez.

  2. westwoodwarrior8 - Sep 16, 2011 at 7:43 PM

    tell em Matt

  3. halladayslabia - Sep 16, 2011 at 8:12 PM

    Hi everyone!!!! The Umpires try their hardest. They make it fair for everyone, and we should be fair to them. The sun was shining, the birds were chirping, and it was a great game played by men who really enjoy their jobs. It was a win/win for everyone. Even the team that lost won, because let’s face it, they had fun. Great job everyone.

    • mrfloydpink - Sep 16, 2011 at 10:40 PM

      + 50. Great name, too.

    • Francisco (FC) - Sep 16, 2011 at 10:49 PM

      Slowly but surely, all of Halladay’s body parts are logging in. At what point do they form Roy Halladay himself?

      • cur68 - Sep 17, 2011 at 12:03 AM

        Eff Cee, dude, if those are part of Halladay’s body then we got our first woman in MLB and she is excellent. Alternatively this could be his wife, Brandy. If so she really needs to choose a better handle because that is just friggin weird.

  4. gogigantos - Sep 17, 2011 at 12:04 PM

    Hey, that is a fair ball, no doubt. He is supposed to flick the ball into the dugout. Yes, foul when touched, but fair after short of the bag. It is a fair ball. Why do you flick the ball away from the line on a bunt when it is foul and rolling? Rules have changed? That is a fair ball and a good call. No NO way is that a bad call.
    show me the rule that says that is foul
    played into fair is fair short of the bags, infield rules
    this is really poor Mr Pouliot, or I am out of date, or an idiot
    not going to debate my idiotness for too long, OK,,, but that is a fair ball, the 3rd baseman knew it and Blue made the right, and easy, call

  5. gogigantos - Sep 17, 2011 at 5:32 PM

    right call, tell me for real it was the wrong call
    IT WAS THE RIGHT CALL

  6. jeffbbf - Sep 17, 2011 at 6:14 PM

    Actually, it was in incredible brain fart on the part of Johnson. There were no outs, bases loaded. The ball was heading foul, and there was no way he was going to get to that ball and force Castro out at home. Why he was anywhere near that ball is baffling. The only reason it even looked fair was because the ball hit off Johnson’s glove and rolled fair. The problem for the umpires was that the ball hit Johnson’s mitt on the foul side of the line. The only way anyone could be 100% sure of that fact was by looking at the super slo mo replay.

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