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Utley’s Dirty Take Out Slide, Atrocious Umpiring Do in the Mets as Dodgers Even the Series



With the Dodgers trailing 2-1 in the 7th inning, and a threat mounting against Noah Syndergaard, Terry Collins elected to bring in Bartolo Colon to face Howie Kendrick.

Chase Utley, who had singled in a pinch hit appearance for Zach Greinke headed for second as Kendrick hit what appeared to be a possible double play ball at Daniel Murphy.  Though the game would have been tied either way, the Mets would have taken the tradeoff of emptying the bases with two down.

Murphy flipped to SS Ruben Tejada who as he fielded, and appeared to step on second base, was taken out by an aggressive, out of the baseline, to borrow a soccer term, ‘red-card worthy’, slide that took out Ruben Tejada.

Tejada was badly injured on the play, and x-rays later revealed it as a broken fibula which will obviously keep Tejada sidelined.  The play robbed the Mets of their best defensive infielder, who will likely be replaced on the roster by either Eric Young Jr. or Eric Campbell.

To make matters worse, Don Mattingly asked for a replay review that the umpires illegally reviewed.

Like it or not, “the neighborhood play” isn’t reviewable, and although Tejada didn’t touch second base as he received the ball, he was “in the neighborhood” and the call should have stood as an out.

Moreover, Utley over-slid the bag, and because he was called out, “gave himself up” which should be called an out for ‘vacating’ and had he been called safe, it’s conceivable that although injured, Tejada would have tagged him as Utley was off the bag.

As for the slide itself, Utley made no attempt to slide in the baseline and it wasn’t “hardnosed”, it was dirty.

As a middle-infielder himself, (well, former middle-infielder, he kind of can’t field anymore), Utley should know better than to direct such a dangerous play at a counterpart.

But now, as a part time player, Utley fears no repercussions ala Roger Clemens back in the day with his protection from a DH.

So, in sum, a play that could have made the game 2-2 with 2 out in no one on, should have been 1 out and 1 on first, ended up being 2 on and no one out and felled Ruben Tejada unnecessarily.

The play opened the flood gates, and the Dodgers went on to accept the gift that was game 2.



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