MLB reportedly admits Anthony Rizzo's controversial slide vs. the Pirates should have been called illegal
A day later, the league office acknowledges a mistake
There was controversy Monday afternoon at PNC Park.
In the eighth inning of his team's win over the Pittsburgh Pirates (CHC 7, PIT 0), Chicago Cubs first baseman Anthony Rizzo slid into catcher Elias Diaz at home plate in what he admitted was an attempt to break up the double play. .
Here's the play:
The play was reviewed and the slide was deemed legal by MLB's central review office. Not surprisingly, the Pirates were not happy about the call.
On Tuesday, MLB has reportedly admitted its mistake. According to multiple reporters, including ESPN's Jesse Rogers, MLB informed both teams the slide was illegal and Rizzo should've been called for interference. From Rogers:
Breaking: Source indicates the league believes interference should have been called yesterday re Anthony Rizzo's 8th inning slide at home plate. Both teams have been informed of that decision which differs from the call on the field and the umpires video review.
Rizzo had already been forced out at the plate before the slide. Had the play been called interference, the Pirates would've been given the out on Diaz's throw to first base. It would've made a significant difference in the game. Consider the situations:
- Rizzo slide called legal: Cubs up 5-0, runner on second with one out.
- Rizzo slide called illegal: Cubs up 3-0, runners on second and third with two outs.
Maybe those runners score and the Cubs take a 5-0 lead anyway. Who knows? I do know a 5-0 game is very different than a 3-0 game though. Both Cubs manager Joe Maddon and Pirates manager Clint Hurdle would've used their bullpen differently.
MLB rule 6.01(i) says the "runner attempting to score may not deviate from his direct pathway to the plate in order to initiate contact with the catcher (or other player covering home plate), or otherwise initiate an avoidable collision." Rizzo, clearly, deviated from his path to initiate an avoidable collision. Was it a dirty slide? I'm not sure. Was it against the rules? For sure.
For whatever reason, MLB's replay crew did not see it that way at the time, and the play stood. The slide was called legal. Now MLB has reportedly backtracked, and informed both teams the slide should've been ruled illegal. That doesn't help the Pirates now, but at least the league is acknowledging the mistake.
CBS Sports HQ Daily Newsletter
Get the best highlights and stories - yeah, just the good stuff handpicked by our team to start your day.
Thanks for signing up!
Keep an eye on your inbox for the latest sports news.
There was an error processing your subscription.
Darvish's season ends after eight starts with a 4.95 ERA
The Cubs have tons of players capable of playing in the infield, so let's work through thi...
The fact the Cubs were awarded the waiver claim tells us every other NL team declined to place...
Welcome back to the spotlight, A-Rod
Stanton holds no ill will toward his former team after he was traded last summer
When a team loses two players minutes apart, it's going to cause some interesting takes on...