How do you bend a straight line? Ask Jose Navas to look at it.
The evening after I offered a limited defense of Marty Foster’s awful baserunning call this week, Jose Navas shoved his thumb in our collective eyes when he called Andrew McCutchen out for... running in a straight line from first to second. It was a much worse call than Foster’s because none of the elements of the play fit the rule cited. But it is in the same category of bad call: enforcing a seldom applied rule at the slightest indication it might apply. In my head I call this interventionist umping and it drives me crazy. Navas saw that Francisco Lindor thought he could tag McCutchen and then found he couldn’t. Then Navas inferred that McCutchen must have left the basepath because otherwise Lindor would have been able to tag him. That’s a terrible way to referee a sport. Umps should call what they actually see, and they should be extra sure of what they saw when they think a rule of rare use might have been violated. Sometimes it pays to be less decisive. Hesitancy is next to accuracy.
- RyneHorde has your entertaining summary of a frustrating but heartening failed comeback.
- Here’s a recap with fun quotes about the McCutchen call.
- Kevin Cooney calls for the Phillies to have a bias toward action to fix its roster.
- Now that it’s May, the minor league season is starting. Here’s a rundown of prospects to scope and where they’ll probably start the year.
- Sam Coonrod is having a bounce-back year so far. He credits fixing how he plays catch.
- Harper has been out of the lineup since being beaned. And that’s a problem because he might be better than ever.
- And finally, Dan has started his yearly draft preview series with a look at Khalil Watson.
- Kiley McDaniel reveals two trends every front office is chasing($).
- If you have an Athletic account and aren’t reading Joe Posnanski’s weekly rundown, please fix that($).
- Maybe chess gives us better insight into the baseball aging curve($).
- And what happens if MLB moves the mound back($)?
Dust to dust, Vesuvian ashes to ashes.