Jun 23, 2013, 7:30 PM EDT
Maybe Jayson Stark should have given the rules quiz to Ben Revere. The Phillies’ centerfielder played a lazy fly ball a bit too casually on Sunday, the end result of which was the umpire correctly ruling the batter safe.
Revere positioned himself under Juan Lagares’ pop fly during the top of the fifth inning for what appeared to be a routine catch. Revere squeezed, and there should have been one out
Instead Lagares was standing on third base, and Revere was left with egg on his face. The ball got away from the defender as he went to transfer it to his free hand, hitting the ground before he could regain control of the situation.
Revere can throw his hands in the air in protest all he wants. It wasn’t a catch as far as Major League Baseball is concerned. Via their official rules:
A CATCH is the act of a fielder in getting secure possession in his hand or glove of a ball in flight and firmly holding it … In establishing the validity of the catch, the fielder shall hold the ball long enough to prove that he has complete control of the ball and that his release of the ball is voluntary and intentional.
In other words, the catch is not considered complete until after the exchange. It’s not the most common rule in the book, but most people were probably aware of this. Based on his reaction, Revere apparently was not.
Chris Wheeler conceded the ruling was technically correct during the Phils broadcast, but questioned whether second base umpire D.J. Reyburn should have made that call in this particular situation. Hey, rules are rules, and are that for a reason. One can easily make the case Revere never had complete control of the ball.
After the game Revere said he thought the ump blew the call. He didn’t though, but okay.
“I asked him, I said, ‘You saw where I had the ball in my glove for a good three or four seconds.’ And he said, ‘It’s just you had to have complete control.’” Revere said of his conversation with second-base umpire D.J. Reyburn. “I was like, ‘Complete control? Like all the way through to throw the ball?’ He was like, ‘No, the glove.’ And I said, ‘I had the glove, I had the ball in my glove the whole time.’ I guess it’s just a bad call. Terrible call.”
Revere is quietly putting together a nice little season at the plate, batting .327 since May 1. His play in the outfield on the other hand has often been shaky to say the least. If it were just this play you might be able to overlook this as a dumb mistake and move on, but he’s consistently demonstrated a real lack of competence out there.
The Mets scored three runs in the inning, not that it mattered. The Phillies couldn’t score any through nine, getting blanked by impressive youngster Matt Harvey for six, then shutdown by the bullpen over the final three. New York won 8-0.
The PhiLOLies dropped two of three to the Mets in the series. But you already knew that because you spent all weekend glued to your couch watching.
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