At this point, it may be more surprising when a week goes by without a terrible call by an MLB umpire. The latest gaffe ranks with some of the worst calls of the 2013 season.
On Friday, the Texas Rangers were attempting to pull off a 3-6-3 double play in the second inning when pitcher Justin Grimm stepped in front of first baseman Mitch Moreland to intercept the ball. First-base umpire Jeff Nelson thought Moreland caught the ball and ruled batter Jesus Sucre out.
Seattle manager Eric Wedge immediately came out to argue the ruling, but even he didn’t know what had happened on the field. Wedge told MLB.com after the game that he was arguing that Moreland pulled his foot off the bag.
“Everybody’s just focused on the bag,” Wedge said. “I thought he came off the bag. That’s what I was out there arguing. And then I come to find out later, with the replay, that he didn’t even catch the ball. … It would have been a much bigger argument if I had known that at the time, no doubt about it.”
No one comes out of this situation looking very good. Nelson blew the call, the rest of the umpire crew apparently didn’t notice Grimm immediately pulling the ball out of his own glove, Wedge wasn’t arguing the right call and Grimm inexplicably sabotaged a double play — and was no worse for wear.
The Rangers went on to win 9-5, while the Mariners are now sporting a seven-game losing streak.