Umpire Eric Cooper seems to think it’s legal to physically knock someone off the bag. There’s no other way to look at this play, which resulted on the Cubs’ David DeJesus being called out after his double Friday against the White Sox.
White Sox second baseman Gordon Beckham obviously knocked DeJesus off the bag. It was more an accident than anything intentional, but it certainly shouldn’t have been ruled an out, not unless we want all of our infielders launching themselves into baserunners going forward.
Cooper didn’t seem interested in getting help from any of the other umpires on the play, and an angry Dale Sveum was ejected for arguing afterwards. The White Sox went on to win the game 3-2.
No surprise here: Chris Sale will start on Opening Day for the Red Sox, Pete Abraham of The Boston Globe reports. The Red Sox open the season on March 29 in Tampa Bay against the Rays. Sale will oppose Chris Archer.
Sale, 28, is the fifth different Opening Day starter the Red Sox have had in as many years, preceded by Rick Porcello, David Price, Clay Buchholz, and Jon Lester. Sale started on Opening Day for the White Sox in 2013, ’14, and ’16.
Sale finished second in AL Cy Young Award balloting last year and finished ninth for AL MVP. He went 17-8 with a 2.90 ERA and a 308/43 K/BB ratio in 214 1/3 innings. Sale and Clayton Kershaw (2015) are the only pitchers to strike out 300 or more batters in a season dating back to 2003.