Among the vast regulation of the Major Leagues there is a simple but obscure rule that is always present in the action, but that is rarely mentioned. It establishes that if a base runner passes to another live base runner who is in front of him at the bases, he will be discarded.
It is hardly mentioned because it is a rule that is rarely violated. This is because basically it is a second nature for professional players to be aware of the runners that precede them.
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As with any rule, there are always some exceptions. Unfortunately for Diamondbacks infielder Deven Marrero, he was the exception on Saturday night during his team's 9-1 victory over the Dodgers. Making it more painful, the rarely seen rape cost Marrero a home run.
Marrero, 27, hit a ball over the fence against left-hander Rich Hill for what he thought was a three-run home run. Alex Avila, who occupied first base, obviously saw it differently. He originally retired at the beginning thinking that baseball stayed in the garden and was caught by a Dodgers outfielder.
By the time any of the players realized what was happening, Marrero went to Ávila. Both stopped immediately once they registered, and then continued to circle the bases. The referees allowed the play to continue, then changed the call after the Dodgers began a review.
Deven Marrero tajea what appears to be his first HR with @Dbacks but after Alex Avila pass review on bases is requested. Marrero is credited with a 2-run single and #Dbacks wins 5-1 in the fourth. pic.twitter.com/3u1iEvuejn
– FOX Sports Arizona (@FOXSPORTSAZ) April 15, 2018
It does not seem fair to apply more blame to one player than another. Avila simply lost the notion of the ball, while Marrero lost the track of Avila. First base coach Dave McKay was also missing the play, and he clearly lost Avila's lead. Hell, even the referees were not safe enough to call him immediately. It should never happen, but in reality it is surprising that it does not happen more often taking into account all the moving parts involved.
We trust that it will never happen again to Marrero or Ávila.
The home run would have been Marrero's first in a Diamondbacks uniform and the sixth overall in 117 MLB games. As he reached the first base safely, he was credited with a single. That's at least good for the batting average. He also takes credit for playing in both races.
Still, home runs are what all baseball players dream of. We can not think of a more painful way to lose a home run than this one.
The Diamondbacks hit four home runs that did count in Saturday's victory. Paul Goldschmidt hit his third part of the season. A.J. Pollock hit his second and third. Naturally, the other was beaten by Avila, who was the first for Arizona.
The Diamondbacks improved to 11-3 with the victory. They are 5-0 against Los Angeles this season.
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