Takeout slide at second no where near the base. stops double play
Shortstop Cleared, Runner Could Reach The Base
Anonymous asked: Is it legal to take out the second baseman and not go at the bag?
Rick answered: Thank you for your question.
This was one horrific collision for sure. MLB found Utley was legal, I believe based on the fact that Tejada had already made the put out at 2B.
Both of them took a tremendous hit. The question would be, could Utley have made contact with the base with some part of his body, from the distance he was at when he started his slide?
If he had no physical chance to do that, then it looks to be malicious.
Legal or not, I would guess there will be some form of retaliation in the future, when there is less at stake than right now.
Tejada was a victim of the play itself. The ground ball up the middle, he's on the backside of the bag; but the feed is up and behind him, which forces him to tag the base and turn his back, thus becoming a sitting duck.
Had the feed been out in front, he would have been able to drag his right foot on the outside corner of the base, set his feet and throw.
From that position, infielders have a chance to release the ball and jump in the air, to avoid the collision. Unfortunately, he did not have that chance.
There is also somewhat of a time warp at work here. Chase Utley has played the game for a long time. He is from an era where if you didn't go after the infielder, you were ostracized by your team mates and management.
MLB made a major adjustment with the slide rule and catcher's blocking home plate without the ball over the last 2 years. There may be some more stringent language built into the actions around second base as well in the near future. Times are changing.
Certainly a big difference in Ty Cobb back in the day, and what is allowed today.
Yours in baseball,
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