MLB umpires Bob Davidson (61) and James Hoye (92) prepare to contact the replay operation center in New York during a review of a dropped ball by Cleveland Indians right fielder Elliot Johnson (not picture) in the first inning against the San Diego Padres at Progressive Field.
David Richard/David Richard-USA TODAY Sports
Indians outfielder Elliot Johnson thought he had a catch but after replay officials looked at his attempted grab in right field, they ruled it was not.
That controversial play came during the second game of a doubleheader the Indians played with the Padres on April 9. Less than a month later, Major League Baseball has seen the light and made a change.
FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal reports that the league will ease the stipulations of the "transfer rule," which previously dictated that a ball could not drop out of a fielder’s glove even after a catch or tag had been successfully executed.
"I made the catch, I hit the wall or the fence with possession of the ball. I took 6-7 steps with the ball. Can we get some common sense here?" Johnson said after the ruling involving his play. "It was a catch, it was an out, let’s move on. It’s not catch and throw. It is two separate things."
The double off the bat of Chris Denorfia that Johnson believed was a catch moved Evereth Cabrera over to third base. Cabrera then scored on a groundout. The Indians lost that game by just a run.
After meeting with the players’ union, MLB executives came around to Johnson and others’ line of thinking that some of the plays were being miscalled, Rosenthal writes.
With any new system come hitches that need to be worked out, so it’s good to see MLB realizing a flaw and quickly correcting it.