MLB umpires beware, don’t let Elvis Andrus fool you.
Umpires get a bad rep as is, and Sunday’s Athletics-Twins game was enough of an ump show to make national headlines. Then, Elvis Andrus happened.
The Athletics infielder hasn’t made much of an impact off the basepaths. As in, his only real contribution is the following — the man watches a lot of basketball. So much so, in fact, that he even has their flopping techniques down the a T.
The umpiring staff, led by home plate ump John Libka, fell for the chicken wing from Andrus. A look at the slow-motion replay, and Andrus reaction after the fact, makes for a rather embarrassing situation for Major League Baseball.
Twins catcher Ben Rortvedt was caught in a pickle
It’s fairly common sense to lead the baserunner all the way back to the bag to avoid a situation where the catcher is chasing him. Rortvedt did not act that out, and instead was determined to tag Andrus out on his own.
That did not go according to plan, and Andrus knew he had one chance at a free run. It worked out to his advantage.
Andrus knows just how lucky he is, and there’s nothing the Twins nor umpires can do about it after missing the flop on the first try.
Such a play ought to be reviewable, and overturned. Andrus initiated said contact, and despite Rortvedt’s mistake of chasing him up the third base line, he should be called out.
Instead, we get a flop LeBron would be proud of.