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Umpires huddle, reverse bad call in ninth inning of Phils-Cards game

Oct 4, 2011, 8:15 PM EDT


They got this one right.

After Jerry Meals ruled that Carlos Ruiz‘s fly to center with one on and one out in the ninth was a single, the umpires huddled and correctly stated that Skip Schumaker caught the ball.

Schumaker, who had just entered as a defensive replacement at the start of the inning, argued the call right away, leading to all six umpires huddling.  Following a minute-long discussion, Ruiz was ruled out.

It was a terrific diving catch from Schumaker, helping to keep it a two-run game in the top of the ninth.  The Cards were down 3-1 at the time.

  1. eagles512 - Oct 4, 2011 at 8:23 PM

    Yes they got it right but without replay, why should another umpire be able to overrule the ump closest even if he is a terrible ump? And Brenlys argument that it was the right call because of the fielders reaction is the dumbest thing I ever heard. 1) Polanco was on 2nd…where else would he throw? 2) How manta times do we see fielders think they catch a ball when they didn’t?

    • uuddlrlrbastart - Oct 4, 2011 at 8:34 PM

      What? The runner was on first. If Schumaker thought he trapped it, he would have thrown to the cut off man to keep the runner from advancing to third, not to first to double him off, so it’s a perfectly logical line of reasoning that he thought he caught the ball.

      And I will never understand the arguments against getting the call right. Why should whoever is closest be the sole determinant for a call?

      • drmonkeyarmy - Oct 4, 2011 at 8:37 PM

        No problem with the call. Brenley’s reasoning is off though in my opinion. How many times have we seen a player try to sell a call?

    • umpdad - Oct 4, 2011 at 10:42 PM

      OK folks, here’s a little Umpire 101. The umpire that made the call is the only one that can change it. He may ask his fellow umpires what they saw and if they convince him, he may change it. By the way, there are no terrible umps in the majors. There is only 70 of them out of the hundreds each year that go to ump shool and try to catch on with the minors. These guys spend 8 to 15 years in the minor leagues honing their skills under intense scrutiny from evaluators before they get promoted to the majors. It’s not as bad as a few years ago when some of them thought they were bigger than the game. MLB has riegned that attitude in. Yes, umpires miss calls. None of them want to miss calls and feel bad when they do. They have to make split second decisions without benefit of mutiple angle slowmotion replays. It’s a very difficult job to do well on as consistent a basis as they do. If you don’t believe me, try umpiring some local youth baseball and find out for yourself.

      • jimbo1949 - Oct 4, 2011 at 11:59 PM

        “It’s not as bad as a few years ago when some of them thought they were bigger than the game.”

        pssst, do you know that West, Hernandez, and Bucknor are still around?

      • stevem7 - Oct 5, 2011 at 11:13 AM

        OK UMPDAD here’s a little Umpire 102. If you think there are no terrible umps in the majors it’s clear that you don’t watch baseball. Tech Track has proved just how horrible some of these umpires are behind the plate, not only during the last few nights but all season long in the case of some. If they were GOOD umpires, they would look at that little disk they get after being behind home plate, see where their weak spots are and make adjustments so they stop calling balls on the batter’s box chalk a strike. Sorry, but the evidence is right there every night and there are TERRIBLE UMPS in the majors.

      • purnellmeagrejr - Oct 5, 2011 at 11:43 AM

        umpdad – if you’re making the point that the umpires they have are better than people rounded up at a bus station to do the job, I’d agree with you. If you’re making the point that there aren’t any terrible umps – I have to think that you’re way wrong.

      • purnellmeagrejr - Oct 5, 2011 at 11:43 AM

        umpdad – if you’re making the point that the umpires they have are better than people rounded up at a bus station to do the job, I’d agree with you. If you’re making the point that there aren’t any terrible umps – I have to think that you’re way wrong.

      • umpdad - Oct 6, 2011 at 12:00 AM

        OK, it’s an old post but I’ll see if anybody is listening. What you have is really a disagreement on the philosophy of the strike zone. Yes guys, it is a philosophy and not a box suspended in midair. Ask any manager or hitter that’s been around the game a while and they will say things like, “I don’t care what the ump’s zone is, as long as it’s consistent and hittable” or ” If it’s over the chalk for their guy, it had better be over the chalk for mine.” or ” If it’s a strike in the first it better be a strike in the ninth.” The problem with how the fans view the way the game is called has everything to do with the influence that television technology has on them. The nuanced beauty of the game has been subsumed by the perception of the uninitiated that everything in baseball has to be precise and black and white. Baseball’s beauty lies in it’s shades of gray. For instance, the third baseman makes a miracle stop deep on the line and throws a BB to first to just nip the batter-runner. Replay shows the runner just beat the ball by a toe. Everyone thinks the ump blew it. No, he rewarded sparkling defense. That, my friends, is the nuanced beauty of the game. The rules are the framework on which the game is hung. It takes years of officiating to understand the nuances and intent of the rules and traditions of the game. Just my two cents.

    • bambam08 - Oct 5, 2011 at 6:55 AM

      Even though I’m a Phillies fan I’m glad that they huddled & got it right. That’s what you want to happen.

      Umpires are able to over rule another but only if the umpire asks for help. If the umpire doesn’t ask for help his call stands.

  2. halladaysbiceps - Oct 4, 2011 at 8:28 PM

    What a hell of a game! The Cards came to play. I give them all the credit in the world. Can’t say anything else right now. I’m too emotionally drained.

  3. drmonkeyarmy - Oct 4, 2011 at 8:35 PM

    Yes, Cardinals really battled. Tremendous game. Also, who knew that Madson bats left handed?

    • proudlycanadian - Oct 4, 2011 at 8:39 PM

      Probably surprised himself to find out that he hit left handed. He struck out with panache.

      • drmonkeyarmy - Oct 4, 2011 at 8:42 PM

        He looked like he might be able to hit with his stance.

  4. eagles512 - Oct 4, 2011 at 8:37 PM

    I meant Polanco was on 2nd by the time he caught it. And my point is if the guy closest saw it one way, why would he be overruled by someone further away. Unless Meals was blocked or something, which he wasn’t. I’m sure that was Manuel’s argument and I agree.

    • drmonkeyarmy - Oct 4, 2011 at 8:42 PM

      He threw to first because Polanco was on second in an attempt to get the double play.

    • bambam08 - Oct 5, 2011 at 7:01 AM

      Meals was in RF & probably didn’t have as good of a view of the play. Cederstrom was at 2B & would have been looking directly into the glove area & should be able to tell if the ball bounced into the glove or if he got the glove under it.

  5. citynative - Oct 4, 2011 at 9:02 PM

    Ohhhh I see how it works. If the Phillies win, their fans will credit the other team. If the Phillies lose, the other team got lucky.

    • drmonkeyarmy - Oct 4, 2011 at 9:06 PM

      Who said the Cardinals got lucky the other night? That is blatantly making stuff up. Cliff Lee pitched poorly and the Cards too advantage. Kudos. Seriously, what is your problem?

      • halladaysbiceps - Oct 4, 2011 at 9:22 PM

        Another person trying to make up stuff, Good Doctor. They expect us to trash the other team we are playing, which no Phillies fan on this board has done, including myself. We always give credit to other teams when they play us well/beat us and complain about our own team’s woes.

        Citynative is way off base.

      • drmonkeyarmy - Oct 4, 2011 at 9:26 PM

        Yeah, all I read the other day was Lee pitched poorly but the Cards took advantage. How is that saying the Cards were lucky? It is saying that they took advantage of the poor pitches much like Francisco did tonight.

    • bambam08 - Oct 5, 2011 at 7:04 AM

      OHHH I see how it works! If a Phillies fan is positive about something a non-Phillie fan has to come up with something to trash them.

      All fans do the same thing. Anyone that says others don’t do the same thing is either a liar or an idiot.

  6. drmonkeyarmy - Oct 4, 2011 at 9:03 PM

    Can’t understand a word Victorino just said.

    • drmonkeyarmy - Oct 4, 2011 at 9:12 PM

      Via Matt Gelb: Shane Victorino, ” Dude, that squirrel was unbelievable. Did they ever catch it?”

      • Francisco (FC) - Oct 4, 2011 at 9:55 PM

        No, I’m pretty sure it was: Shane Victorino: “Dude-thatSquirrelWasUnbelievableDidTheyEverCatchIt!?!?!?!?!”

    • halladaysbiceps - Oct 4, 2011 at 9:14 PM

      Alright, I’m 10% calmer right not. Good Doctor, what a hell of a game! Great performance by Hamels. He pitched with the mentality “I will not give any runs up, even though I will elevate my pitch count.” He is (1a) star of the game. Benny, with that unexpected 3 run blast, is (1b) star.

      I give the utmost respect to that Cardinals lineup. Those guys aren’t quitters. They battle to the very end. Pujols especially. He showed this series why he is the best player in baseball.

      • kycardsfan - Oct 4, 2011 at 9:20 PM

        I hope the cards can force a game 5 so we can see Halladay vs Carpenter, good game tonite glad to see the cards batttle down to the last out, double plays have been the story for stl this year and it killed them tonite…woulda been nice to albert get a chance with them loaded in the 8th

      • drmonkeyarmy - Oct 4, 2011 at 9:20 PM

        Yeah, Albert was on point. He hit some good pitches too.

  7. sgtr0c - Oct 4, 2011 at 9:16 PM

    D minus! With all you could have written about this game, you came up short. The only story during the game about it, your story had nothing to do with the out come. Great game! Bad HBT coverage.

    • drmonkeyarmy - Oct 4, 2011 at 9:19 PM

      This was actually posted before the game ended. There will be write up I am sure.

  8. citynative - Oct 4, 2011 at 9:32 PM

    Not off base at all…. case and point… Philly’s opinion towards the 2010 Giants.

    • halladaysbiceps - Oct 4, 2011 at 9:34 PM

      Now you’re grasping at straws.

    • drmonkeyarmy - Oct 4, 2011 at 9:42 PM

      All I heard after that is how the Phillies can’t hit and Ryan Howard sucks. I mean, people said Cody Ross got hot/lucky….but that is just true.

  9. leftywildcat - Oct 4, 2011 at 9:51 PM

    Still another close-score post-season game that makes still another compelling argument for having an extra umpire in the broadcast booth (with an extra coach from each team, maybe?) who can view all the replay videos over and over and take care of all challenges on all basepath, fair/foul and fair catch plays.

  10. citynative - Oct 4, 2011 at 9:53 PM

    Im dead on and you know it. By the way, did Ben Francisco get lucky?

    • drmonkeyarmy - Oct 4, 2011 at 9:58 PM

      He took advantage of a bad pitch much like the Cards did with Lee the other night. If you want to call that luck, fine. It was the one spot you can’t leave a pitch to Francisco.

    • Francisco (FC) - Oct 4, 2011 at 9:58 PM

      You’re dead wrong and you know it. Ben Francisco was extremely lucky Garcia left him that beauty of a present exactly where his swing would loft a bomb out of the park.

    • bambam08 - Oct 5, 2011 at 7:08 AM

      Yeah. Francisco got lucky.

  11. citynative - Oct 4, 2011 at 10:10 PM


    Thank you… you prove my point exactly. See how the perspective changes? When Francisco hits it its taking advantage of a bad pitch which intimates skill…. when Ross does it its luck.

    Good luck in the rest of the series.

    • drmonkeyarmy - Oct 4, 2011 at 10:15 PM

      Yes, it was lucky that the pitch was in the one precise location that he is able to upper cut a HR. Cody Ross was on an unprecedented (for him) hot streak. They are not comparable. One at bat with being on fire like never before are completely different things. You know what man, think what you want. Keep whatever nonsense you want in your head it matters not to me….just like that Cardinal clown on here today with his us against the world attitude. It makes me laugh the pure nonsense that people delude themselves into thinking.

      • firedude7160 - Oct 4, 2011 at 10:52 PM

        Good Dr.
        It is best not to feed the trolls

  12. 1943mrmojorisin1971 - Oct 4, 2011 at 11:16 PM

    Jerry Meals couldn’t make the right call on a play 2 feet in front of his face, how can he be expected to make one on a play all the way out in center field?

  13. tophermike - Oct 4, 2011 at 11:33 PM

    I was at the game tonight and from what it looked like, the umpires made the reversal based on POLANCO’S reaction. He was much closer than the right field umpire to the play and he immediately started retreating to first only to stop and run hard to second after seeing the umpire’s ruling.

    So it wasnt Schumaker selling it… Polanco did that himself when he saw the catch.

    • Francisco (FC) - Oct 5, 2011 at 11:32 AM

      Not necessarily, Polanco figured it would be better to be safe than sorry.

      • tophermike - Oct 5, 2011 at 11:37 AM

        Not sure I agree there, but it didnt really affect the outcome. I thought he was retreating after seeing the catch because he thought it better to be safe than out.

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