Tuesday, October 4, 2011

How would you rule

I remembered this play while watching Jon Jay of the Cardinals run over the catcher.

Runner on 2nd, 1 out. The batter hits a line drive to center. The runner from 2nd rounds third. The throw is coming in. The runner is coming home. The ball is cut off but the catcher acts like he caught it and blocks the plate. The runner absolutely lights the catcher up. Do you make a call here?

This happened in a Frontier League game where I was behind the plate. Actually it was my first Frontier League plate.


  1. There should be no call in my opinion. If anything, you could call interference on the catcher. The catcher can't feign having the ball and block the plate. It would be the same thing as if the second baseman pretended to have the ball and tried to tag out the runner.

  2. Technically, if I called anything if would have been obstruction because he obstructed the plate without the ball and not in the act of fielding the ball. But even if I called that, what would the penalty be since the runner already scored.

    I didn't make a call at all but let me tell the rest of the story. Upon getting trained by the runner, the catcher stared down the runner. The next time he came up, the first pitch was at his head and the benches cleared. As an umpire, I should have made a point to make sure everyone in the stadium knew that the catcher was wrong for doing that. With it being my first plate at the professional level, I didn't want to draw any attention to myself. If I could do it over, I would have warned the catcher to knock that off. Not in a way in start an argument but in a way to make sure I stopped the retailiation before it started.

  3. I meant obstruction, not interference. There can't be interference on a defensive player (duh, my bad).

    I agree with your call.