As you know by now, Chase Utley did not get hit by Aroldis Chapman last night. That’s what happens when someone throws 105 mph and we don’t have instant replay. And yeah, Utley was probably out at second base too, as evidenced by this picture here.
One thing that we can clear up, though, is that Utley did touch third base before scoring the tying run. It’s a little tough to tell from the screen grab to the right, but Scott Rolen confirmed as much to Bill Singer of MLB.com.
“I saw him touch the bag. I take a look when someone comes around third,
and he touched it, Just the corner. But that’s all you need.”
I can understand that some are asking why Utley isn’t facing the same criticism that Derek Jeter did last month, but there is one significant difference between the two events. Utley didn’t even need to state his case on the hit-by-pitch, because home plate umpire Bruce Dreckman did all the work for him. Utley just put his head down and kept going. Nothing we haven’t seen before.
Fellow second basemen Javier Baez of the Cubs and D.J. LeMahieu of the Rockies got into a disagreement in the top of the third inning of Sunday’s game at Coors Field over sign-stealing.
LeMahieu reached on a fielder’s choice ground out, then advanced to second base on Charlie Blackmon‘s single. While Nolan Arenado and Trevor Story were batting, Baez was concerned that LeMahieu was relaying the Cubs’ signs to his teammates. Baez decided to stand in front of LeMahieu to block any information he might have been giving to Arenado and Story. LeMahieu got irritated and the two jawed at each other for a bit. Umpires Vic Carapazza and Greg Gibson had to intervene to tell Baez to knock it off.
There has always been a back-and-forth with alleged sign-stealing. As long as teams aren’t using technology to steal signs, it’s fair game for players to relay information to their teammates about the opposing team’s signs. Last year, MLB determined the Red Sox went against the rules and used technology — an Apple watch in this case — to steal signs from the Yankees. Other teams in the past have been accused of using binoculars from the bullpen to steal signs. In this particular case with Baez and LeMahieu, there was no foul play going on, just Baez trying to make the Rockies cede what he perceived to be their slight competitive advantage.
The Cubs went on to beat the Rockies 9-7 on Sunday.