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Monday, August 23, 2010

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Lee's stupid hit

Valdez' stupid bunt

Trying to think of a worse loss this year. That Twins bullpen implosion maybe?

How is Michael Bourn awarded that base?
The answer is; the ump told Charlie that the runner can go as far outside the baseline as he likes...including going to the dugout...if he establishes his basepath.

So we lost on some idiotic and completely wrong interpretation of the rule book.

Three feet either side of the basepath. That's what you get. that's a lot less than was given to Bourn.

Yes, the Twins game was definitely worse.

Sophist: That was way worse. At least the Astros earned it with quality pitching.

This was a game the Braves win. How many times have/will the Phils fail to make up ground when afforded the opportunity?

I'm not sure I've ever been more angry at a Phillie hitting .299 in my life. Werth has been terrible! His hits and runs are meaningless and his base running has been horrendous. I know I will not be among those crying in the likely event he goes elsewhere next season.

I think I had accepted the fate of the Twins game after the Thome AB. Just felt robbed tonight, and later in the year no less when wins "feel" more important.

4-3 Rox.

bigmyc, apparently the homeplate ump said he wouldn't comment on the play.

Cards win, SF w/ 4 in the 1st. WC scoreboard-watching at its most frustrating.

I mean to the press after the game he wouldn't comment.

#1-I thought he was out of the basepath
#2- The Phils need to shrug off bad calls and win anyway That used to be a trademark of this team . Not tomight.

Was there a similar Vic play earlier this year? Apparently Vic was called out on an identical play by the same ump earlier this year against Cleveland. I don't remember it but here it is:

http://i.imgur.com/K802d.png

Sophist: Yeah, and Manuel said in the postgame that he argued with the same umpire there, too.

Well, Braves are down to 4 outs and down a run. Lee is 1-15 since joining the team, and the Rockies have a good 'pen. Their in Colorado where anything can happen, but at least it's not the Cubs.

4-4. Shocker.


Son of a bits. Its like unless you are up 5 runs on the Braves in late innings they will come back and get you.

Twins' loss hands-down. Anytime you give up a 5-run lead in that matter late it is the worst loss of the year.

This was just a well-pitched, close game the Phils came out on the wrong end of the score for several reasons.

Venters in ... again

Sophist - Is Venters really a robot? Maybe just a human with a cybernetic arm?

First base ump made a terrible and a wrong call. On plays that like, it should be automatic that another ump who saw the play is brought in.

MG, maybe the TJ surgery and losing a season to elbow tendinitis made his arm even stronger?

Umps blow a CS in Colorado. Not as bad as the call here tonight. Then miss a close call to walk Tulowitzki. 2 on, none out. Helton up.

Wasn't even the worst loss of the month. That 1-0 loss to R.A. Dickey, about two weeks ago, was worse.

Venters had a 1.588 WHIP, a 5.62 ERA, and a 1.38 K/BB in AAA last year. Time for the coach to change into a pumpkin.

Rockies take lead, but TT makes first out at 3rd. Bad baserunning.

bigmyc: The rule states that once the runner makes an effort to avoid a tag he must continue from that point in a straight line towards the first base bag. So the interpretation of the rule is not wrong.

Furthermore, the ump was saying that Bourn was already past Howard when he dove for the tag. I have more of a problem with that as it's clear that wasn't the case.

5-4 Rocks going to the 9th

Maybe a closer can do his job against the Braves this time. No Marmol for miles. Should be a Rockies victory tonight. Unfortunately, we still lost ground tonight, since an opportunity wasted is lost ground to me.

Depending on Houston Street to shut down the Braves is a lot like depending on Werth to play heads up on the basepaths.

TTI, the rule states that once a defender makes an attempt to tag you, the straight line between you and the bag is the baseline. Howard made the attempt before Bourn deviated from his path, then Bourn went clearly beyond the three foot restriction. The rule was broken.

2 outs and 0-2 quickly.

Street looking good.

The rule:

7.08 (a) (1). "Any runner is out when he runs more than three feet away from a direct line between bases to avoid being tagged unless his action is to avoid interference with a fielder fielding a batted ball"

TTI, where did you get your rule from? Bourn moved to avoid the tag. Did he go more than 3 feet from his direct line between the bases (basically the line between home and first in this case)? If yes, he's out.

And we stay 2.5 back. I'll take it. Another missed opportunity.

Rox win.

Street's a pretty damn good relief pitcher.

Well, despite a late rush to take the lead, the Rockies pull it out. Not the worst night ever, but still stinks. Let's hope the Phillies get a little urgency and put some runs up for Hamels and Halladay. We can still take 3 in this series, which would be huge.

Braves lose, at least. It would be nice to finally gain some ground, though. 3 at home against Houston is a much easier matchup than 3 on the road against Colorado.

And when Happ shuts down the Phils' potent offense, will be still be hearing about how he cannot maintain his dominance of the league? The same way people were predicting that idiot Myers would implode from all the adrenaline of coming back to Philadelphia?

Just wondering.

Hamels and Halladay the next two games...gotta make up some ground here. That's the positive.

The negative...where the hell are the bats? I'm sick of the excuses for Howard and previously Utley. If they aren't ready then they should be on minor league rehab assignment. Surely Sweeney could have done what Howard did tonight.


Nice to know that the Braves arent going to win every late/close game. Washes some of the bad taste out of tonights loss.

Fatalotti: I suggest you read again what bigmyc said.

And the ruling is that you can avoid the fielder's tag. Once you avoid the tag though the new baseline is a straight line between you and the bag. Once you deviate from that line you are considered out of the baseline.

The main question is when did Bourn make his movement in relation to when Howard went to apply the tag. That is where the ump made his ruling.

Feels like we lost a game to the Braves tonight.

I guess we actually did.

Dukes, I agree. If Howard and Sweeney weren't ready, then they should have been sent down to the minor leagues...the present production and especially its lack of power is concerning.

When I feel more confident with Chooch coming to the plate than our $125 million man, that's concerning.

TTI, Again, the rule:

7.08 (a) (1). "Any runner is out when he runs more than three feet away from a direct line between bases to avoid being tagged unless his action is to avoid interference with a fielder fielding a batted ball"

Bourn's established baseline, established as running down after the bunt, was basically right down the middle of the dirt. He moved to avoid the tag. Did he go more than 3 feet?

Are you looking at a different rule? There's no "new baseline" in the rule above.

In my previous post, Sweeney = Utley...not sure why I have Sweeney on the brain, sorry.

TTI, read the actual rule posted by Sophist above. Once the fielder makes an attempt to tag you, at that very moment, a line is drawn between you and the bag. You CANNOT go more than three feet away from that line. The line between you and the bag is established before you try to avoid the tag...that's the point. Why would they establish the line after you avoid the tag? If that was the rule, you could run into the outfield, then once you've successfully avoided the tag, they'd establish a new line... does that make sense to you?

The Phillies got a bad call on Bourn's bunt, but they lost this game way before that, leaving runners in scoring position on many occasions. Victorino in particular was bad, twice failing with RISP and less than 2 outs and not even advancing the runners either time.
This season at least it seems Shane should only bat RH. He's not hitting anything LH (226 BA, 286 OBP, 674 OPS), and he's not getting any infield hits from being on the left side either. His RH numbers are much better (339-389-976). If he batted exclusively RH, would he bat less than 226 vs RHP? Why not see for a few games?

I don't understand why Ibanez was left in to face the LHP pitcher late in the game when Sweeney, Polanco and Francisco were all available.

Why Werth was even taking any lead at all on an intentional walk is something only he knows. Hoping for a wild pitch perhaps? I vote for daydreaming.

Jayson Werth presents an interesting case when it comes to whether the Phillies should re-sign him. He is a walking contradiction in terms.

His 299 BA says contact hitter, but he is on pace to strike out over 150 times.
His SLG (512) and OPS (912) say power hitter, but he's on pace for a pedestrian 20 HRs.
He has good speed but is a terrible baserunner and has just 8 SBs.
He takes a lot of pitches per AB, one of the highest totals in the league, yet has a much higher BA early in the count and hits poorly with 2 strikes (225 BA).
He usually bats 5th in the order, yet has a BA of 159 with RISP.
He has NO baseball IQ at all.
A true enigma.


How much $$ and how many years should one invest in such a player? I would opt out if I were the Phillies.


Actually, reading further, I think the "established line" is established when the tag is attempted, and it is defined as a straight line from the runner to the base.

TTI, that jives what you said with the rule.

Yeah, it's defined when the tag attempt is made, not when a move is made to avoid the tag.

The attempt to tag Bourn was made when Bourn was still on the direct line between home plate and 1st base. Therefore, Bourn's attempt to avoid the tag took him more than 3 feet away from that line.

Sophist- You aren't copying the second sentence in that rule. At least- this is the 2010 rule book listed on the MLB site- on page 67

7.08 Any runner is out when—
(a) (1) He runs more than three feet away from his baseline to avoid being tagged
unless his action is to avoid interference with a fielder fielding a batted ball. A
runner’s baseline is established when the tag attempt occurs and is a straight
line from the runner to the base he is attempting to reach safely

So it's actually a two part rule but it's written backwards in an odd fashion.

The second part of the rule says that the runner is allowed to move to avoid a tag attmept, when he does he is establishing "his baseline." From there he is not allowed to move more than 3 feet from that baseline.

I'm not saying I think the ump got the call right. I thought Bourn moved more than 3 feet away from what his baseline was. Bigmyc is saying the ump didn't interpret the rule correctly which is false. Bigmyc seemingly doesn't understand the rule.

The Phillies team should've invited the ump to meet them outside after the game.

(for the record, reading the book "Cobb"...that dude was a crazy mother.)

I doubt we shall hear any contrition from Mr. Umpire, but every time I see that play again, I can't help but wonder where Bourn was going and how said Ump didn't see it.
As an aside, Ryno says he tagged Bourn and he knows it.

I predict the umpire will cry tonight and then come out and hug Blanton and apologize to him tomorrow. Then the Phillies will award him a new Camaro (if he can fit in one).

TTI, as I read the rule on MLB.com, it says that runner's baseline is established when the TAG ATTEMPT occurs, not when the avoidance of the tag attempt occurs. As far as I interpret that, the baselines is established by where the runner is when the DEFENDER makes the tag attempt. It is independent of anthing the runner does, other than depending on where the runner is in relation to the base when the tag attempt occurs.

When Howard made the attempt (ie. his initial move to tag Bourn), you have to determine where Bourn was. Once you establish that, you then draw a straight line between Bourn and the base. From that moment on, Bourn has 3 feet of cusion on both sides of him to get to the base and avoid the tag. He used much more than the three feet allotted. He was out. Unequivocally.

TTI, bigmyc's post confuses me. In any case, all I'm saying is that the baseline is established when the tag attempt occurs, not when the move to avoid the tag occurs. Your paraphrase makes it sound like the latter, but it's the former. He's not allowed to move 3 ft outside the line between him and the base once a tag attempt occurs.

The runner can't leap 10 feet towards the tugout to avoid the tag unless he does it before the attempt.

Sophist: I differ slightly there because I think they are saying when the fielder actually tries to tag you. I don't think they mean in this case that when Howard begins his dive the line is drawn. I think it means when Howards glove would hit Bourn's line at a 90 degree angle he can move to avoid that and has 3 feet from there. I don't know if that makes sense in describing it or not.

And in watching the play again Bourn is actually a step or two to the right of the first base line as he starts up the line. The second white line there is 3 feet from the foul line. So it was definitely close as to how far Bourn went in his 3 foot space.

Heather, it's looking more and more like Howard wasn't/isn't ready, through no fault of his own. He was activated because obviously Gload was hurt worse than they realized or because he re-injured (my opinion) his groin in a start at 1B. If Gload had been healthy, they woould have IMHO waited a bit on Howard.

Utley is hitting .222 .333 .278 in 21 PA since being activated, with a Babip of .235.

That .333 OBP is better than the .278 that Wilson Valdez (no disrespect) has achieved this season(or the .275 lifetime), and Utley was probably activated because they realized even Utley at 70% >>> Valdez.

(watching replay of Werth tagged out after an intentional walk) WTF!

I'll be honest- when they show the close-up of the play I don't think the ump got it wrong. Bourn was halfway between the two white lines when Howard attempted to tag him which is approximately 18 inches off the foul line. He has 3 feet from there to his right but then must keep a straight line from there to the base.

What frustrates me more about the call is that the first base ump didn't ask the home plate ump when it seemed like the home plate ump was ready to call Bourn out.

TTI, again, tag attempt. It says nothing about how close the glove has to be to the runner. Now, we have to consider it reasonably. Obviously a filder in right field can't make a tag attempt on a runner at third, but when they are reasonably situated,, and a tag attempt occurs (as in, defender attempts to make a tag), the baseline is automatically established.

TTI, I'm not sure I said anything about what a tag attempt is. Just saying that the baseline isn't established by the line created after the movement to avoid.

the problem with the bourn play is when you say the tag attempt is occuring. I say its occuring when howard makes his lunge. at this point bourn is still in his original baseline but begins to move right... THEN he kicks his body right... which ends up well 3 feet from his original position... the new baseline isn't when he was on the grass, but when he was still in the dirt...

all i know is... when utley is arguing a call you know the call is wrong.

TTI, that is what grinds my gears the most. If the two of them had gotten together and still made the same call, even if I disagreed, I would not have been that mad about it, and who knows, maybe the situation wouldn't have been so tense on the field. Instead, the first base ump obstreporously refued to ask for help, and that kind of arrogance has no place in sports or any dealings where others interests are involved.

Just showed it on MLBN. Looks like more than 3 feet to me, but I don't have a TV measuring tape.

Fatalotti: The point you're missing here is none of us are sure what they mean particularly by "tag attempt." They could mean literally when Howard begins his dive. They could mean, as I said, that when Howard's glove would touch Bourn's line in effect.

I'm sure there has been something said to the umps to clear that discrepancy. If there hasn't there will be after tonight I'm sure.

I still say after watching it again that the plat is a lot closer than it first appeared. The two white lines are 3 feet apart and Bourn was halfway in between them when Howard and Bourn passed each other. Where Bourn's feet landed he was close to the 3 feet mark but may have been in it. After that though he isn't really trying to avoid being tagged. His body does kick further foul but it is because of the way he contorted himself and not a blatant attempt to avoid being tagged. If Howard is on his feet and Bourn runs towards the coaches box to get around the tag he is clearly out. Basically you are allowed one move when the fielder physically tries to tag you. Bourn made one move and was really close to his 3 foot window.

Also, keep in mind I'm saying that bigmyc's understanding of the rule is completely incorrect.

I think Sophist, Fatalotti, and I can agree on that even if we can't fully agree on how the rule is worded.

Why not rephrase it "I feel more comfortable with Chooch coming to the plate than our perennial MVP candidate, that's concerning"?

Says something about the author, doesn't it?

While this is getting as tired as Whistling Straits, Gelb is claiming you can see Howard tag him in the replay ("watch his belt" he says).

There's also some business about Gibson accusing Manuel of threatening is life in their last argument.

Gibson has a life?

On a totally unrelated point that no one cares about except MG and I, here are the collective ERAs of the Braves & Phillies' starting rotations in the 6 games since August 18, when MG and I made our bet about which rotation would have the better ERA from here on out (I bet on the Phils):

Braves: 4.74
Phils: 3.08

That 3.08 figure includes the 2 stinkers from Hamels & KK. In the other 4 games, our starters (Halladay, Oswalt & Blanton twice) have pitched 27.33 innings and allowed 3 runs. The Braves' starting rotation got a 7-inning, 2-run outing from Hudson on 8-18, and have had 5 bad to mediocre outings since then.

BAP, you bet that the Phils would have the better ERA than the Braves from now til the end of the season? Hell, I'd take that bet in a heartbeat.

One point that isn't getting mentioned is that Howard did tag Bourn but the umpire couldn't see it.

"The Brewers are set to honor former club owner and current Major League Baseball Commissioner Allan H. "Bud" Selig with a bronze statue on the home plate plaza at Miller Park."

How will they know the difference between that and the actual person?

Have we figured out whether or not Happ left his smoke and mirrors in Philly, or did he bring them with him? I suppose we'll find out in a couple of days.

The Braves not only would have won that game last night vs Houston, they also would have won that game in Colorado.

Yo, new thread

After watching the replays and absorbing the BL perspectives, what the #@*& was Werth thinking? Not only was he off the base,but he was not even paying attention to the situation, obviously daydreaming. My view was that Bourn was out, poor judgment call. But that's baseball. Would be curious to hear(1) what people said to Werth, if anything; and (2) some sort of "ruling" about the Bourn call because I'm still not sure.

It is likely going to be a crazy roller-coaster ride the rest of the season. There was a certain sense that when Utley and Howard returned, it would be like, "The troops have held them off as long as they could, but it's OK now, here comes the cavalry."

That may be true, but I am not seeing the cavalry playing at 100% yet. It may be just a matter of time until both of them break out and go on tears...or they may not do that at all. We have no idea till the games play out. And Polly, although hitting well,is an ongoing question mark for the rest of the season due to the elbow.

My fan side hopes for Utley and Howard to explode and go on the type of streaks that carry the team. Both are certainly capable of it - if they are healthy. My well ingrained Phils' pessimism, however, tells me that neither will be quite right for the rest of the year.

Not trying to spread gloom and doom when the team has done a terrific job fighting through this year's obstacles. I appreciate their hard work and respect the team more for fighting so hard under ongoing tough circumstances. Certainly many teams don't have that type of fortitude, and it's to the Phils' credit that they do.

But for my own sanity, I'm preparing for more tough circumstances, hoping all the while for another storybook finish.

In 2008, did the Phillies usuually win games like last night or like the Twins fiasco back in June?

My gut says yes, and it concerns me that they seem not to playing smart, esp in key situations.

2 examples-

As far as Werth, Last nite at 2nd base, I think he was stoned, drunk, or day dreaming of $$ dancing in his head..

Howard must think the pitchers will serve a big fat fast ball when he is down in the count 0-2 or 1-2.. No Ryan, they will giving you the same garbage that you always swing and miss on until you STOP DOIN' IT!

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