|Ruben Tejada, shortstop for the New York Mets,|
fractured his leg on this play Friday night.
That rule is seldom invoked. It should have been in this case, but the umpiring crew, and specifically second base umpire Chris Guccione, lacked the, let us say, courage to make that call. Not that making the interference call would heal Tejada's leg.
This play comes a few weeks after a similar late slide by the Cubs' Chris Coghlan broke the leg of Pittsburgh infielder Jung Ho Kang.
Utley's block, even in the context of ''gotta break up the double play," was probably unnecessary. I don't think Tejada could have gotten the double play had Utley simply slid into the base. There are differing opinions on whether it was a dirty play. I think it was.
Utley was wrong. The umps were wrong. And I sincerely hope that MLB, which has largely cleaned up the home plate collisions, will tighten the rules on force play slides. If you hit the infielder, you've got to touch the base as well, or have the DP called automatically. No judgment required.