Cubs vs Reds: Umpire confusion reigns in the 6th inning - Through The Fence Baseball

Cubs vs Reds: Umpire confusion reigns in the 6th inning

by Gene Stevens | Posted on Tuesday, May 17th, 2011
| 713 baseball fanatics read this article

In the bottom of the sixth inning of  Tuesday’s Cubs-Reds game, Cincinnati’s Miguel Cairo was at bat with two outs and two strikes. Chicago pitcher Matt Garza throws a sinker into the dirt, and Cairo swings and, apparently (note the word apparently), strikes out. Cairo, believing he had struck out, quietly strolls out of the batter’s circle and back to the Cincinnati dug out.

As the Cubs are walking off the field to the dugout, the inning apparently (there’s that word again) isn’t over because the Reds runners on base advance and confusion reigns supreme on the field (which seems to be normal for this short series with Cincinnati) with a missed or confused call by the home base umpire, who failed to call Cairo’s swing what it actually was — a strike. The pitch was apparently (yes, again) called a ball, so Cairo takes first base, and the next Cincinnati batter steps to the plate and is subsequently struck out by Garza.

Everyone involved in this sixth-inning debacle is stunned — the fans, the commentators and the players. Though the men in black, as usual, are the unaccountable silent minority. After reviewing the instant replay, it was clear that the home plate umpire was an uninvolved party, as no call is made. Rule 6.09 B (as quoted by Comcast Sports Network) states that once a batter walks out of the circle surrounding home plate he is out. It’s good that Comcast took the time to look up the rule; unfortunately, the umpires in the bigs don’t seem to know the rules — the rules they are paid  to monitor and enforce. On top of that, baseball’s advanced use of video technology showed another umpire asleep at the base during the play!

The Cubs went onto to lose the game to the Reds, 7-5, though the call (or lack thereof) had nothing to do with the loss. That was accomplished by Kerry Wood and the Cubs poor defensive performance.

Post By Gene Stevens (8 Posts)

I was born and raised on the northside of Chicago near the Lakeview neighborhood. I was a member of the Neighborhood Chicago Boys Club. It was there where I got my first taste of organized sports. As kids, my friends and I would walk to Wrigley Field, buy cheap tickets and sit in the upper deck to watch the Cubs. My sister worked at Murphys Bleachers across from Wrigley, and my nephew was a bat boy for the Cubs. My real interest in the Cubs peaked after returning home from military service in 1982, and I have rarely missed a game on WGN since. My profile picture is of my kids with Ron Santo a couple of years ago at Gurnee Mills in Gurnee, Illinois.



Must Read Columns

Through The Fence Baseball