Saturday’s game between the Cincinnati Reds and San Francisco Giants gave us another controversy with Tommy Pham and Joc Pederson playing prominent roles — just not in the way anyone expected.

In the bottom of the first inning, Pederson came to the plate with one out and Austin Slater on first base. He hit a high fly ball into medium-deep left field, right on the line. Pham, the left fielder, sprinted over to try to catch the ball narrowly missed it on a dive.

Two controversies came out of this play.

One, while the ball landed in fair territory and Pham’s slide did nothing to impede third base umpire Andy Fletcher’s view of the play, it was ruled foul. The Giants challenged and won.

Two, the overturned call was only a partial victory for San Francisco. The review did determine that the ball was fair. But instead of the seemingly obvious decision of putting Pederson on second base and Slater on third, Slater was given third base while Pederson was on first. That decision loomed large when the next hitter, Darin Ruf, grounded into an inning-ending double play.

The decision to put Pederson on first got a big reaction from baseball fans.

Fletcher missing the call is one thing. Yes, he had a clean look at the play but it was also from several feet away. And while Pham’s slide didn’t block his view of the ball, all of the activity might have diverted his attention for a fraction of a second. That can happen. We’ve seen more blatant misses this season. Heck, we saw a more blatant miss with Angel Hernandez earlier on Saturday. But at least Hernandez’s mistake was corrected by review. This mistake was exacerbated by review.

If people want to know why fans are more frustrated with MLB umpires than ever before, they needn’t look any further than situations like this.

[Just Baseball]

About Michael Dixon

Michael has a background in sports writing both online (Bleacher Report, Sportsnaut, Fantasy Baseball Crackerjacks) and in print (Sedona Red Rock News, Brentwood Press). Sports have been a lifeline passion for Michael and he continues to enjoy writing and talking about them.