Of course. Even after throwing at Willson Contreras – twice – yesterday, the Pirates weren’t done expressing their displeasure with Anthony Rizzo’s slide from the opener in this series.
As the Cubs tried to turn two in the third inning tonight, pitcher Joe Musgrove bore down at second base, over the bag, and into Javy Baez. It sure looked like a little more than your typical slide into second base (even one designed to prevent a double play), and Baez was displeased. The benches cleared:
Oh look… ANOTHER slide controversy in Pittsburgh. And this time the benches cleared!
— Cubs Talk (@NBCSCubs) May 31, 2018
To be sure, I don’t think that slide was *that* bad, but going over the base into a defender who is using the base to protect himself is exactly the kind of takeout slide MLB is trying to remove from the game.
So, after all the shenanigans in this series, surely the crew would get this one right and call a double play, right? Nope:
Re: Baez/Musgrove play in 3rd, the umpires on the field determined that Baez did not attempt to turn a double play and came to headset to verify that the slide at 2B was non-reviewable. #Cubs
— Carrie Muskat (@CarrieMuskat) May 31, 2018
I’ll look into this more tomorrow if we’re not just tired of this crap, but that’s never been how the rule was explained. An illegal slide was interference regardless of whether the defender “attempted to turn a double play.” That’s a really derpy requirement when the whole point of the rule is to PROTECT DEFENDERS. Imagine a rule that requires you to get yourself jacked up just to get interference called. I look forward to MLB sending the Cubs word that they screwed this one up, too.
And, as you might expect:
TV replay shows Diaz in dugout shaking Musgrove's hand, giving him a pat on the back.
— Mark Gonzales (@MDGonzales) May 31, 2018