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Wednesday, June 25, 2014
Major League Baseball took a formal step Tuesday to clarify a portion of the new rule governing unnecessary collisions between baserunners and catchers at home plate.
In a statement sent to the baseball operations departments for all 30 teams, MLB said umpires have been instructed not to apply Rule 7.13 to force plays at home plate. The directive came several days after Joe Torre, MLB’s executive vice president of baseball operations, said the rules were interpreted incorrectly to overturn an apparent force play in a game between Cincinnati and Pittsburgh.
“A number of questions recently have arisen about the application of Official Playing Rule 7.13 to force plays at home plate,’’ the MLB statement said. “Rule 7.13 was adopted in order to prevent unnecessary collisions at home plate between a runner attempting to score and a catcher attempting to make a tag play on the runner. The Rule as intended has no function or purpose in the context of a force play (i.e., a runner attempting to score from third with the bases loaded). As a result, effective immediately, Umpires will be instructed not to apply Rule 7.13 to force plays at home plate.’‘
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