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Thursday, June 03, 2010
Looking at freeze frame of this angle, before you even press the play button for video the ball wasn't secure in the webbing of the glove of pitcher Galarraga at the moment Jason Donald's foot was on the bag, it's too close to call from this angle still. Was this the wrong call at all?
Looking at the play from the back of Galarraga, you assume he beat Jason Donald to the bag but did he have control of the ball? This front shot shows something different.
What is a legal catch of a baseball? Does he have control? Here is an excerpt from a July 2008 article in Baseball Digest about control of a ball. Galarraga sweeps his glove as the ball neared him, but did he legally possess the ball at the time Donald's foot hit the bag?
Often times a player will "glove," "grab," "spear" or "snare" a ball but not make a legal catch by the rules. To make a legal catch, a defensive player must meet all of the following criteria: (1) He must have secure possession of a ball in flight in his hand or glove and firmly hold it; (2) He must hold the ball long enough to prove that he has complete control of the ball; and (3) His release (transfer) must be voluntary and intentional. Regarding item No.2, the voluntary and intentional release of the ball is proof of complete control even if the player's body is not under control, although this seldom occurs.