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MLB reached out to White Sox to explain bizarre, game-ending interference call

Major League Baseball reached out to the White Sox regarding the controversial game-ending interference call in Thursday’s 8-6 loss to the Orioles.

ESPN insider Jesse Rogers reported Friday that the league “essentially” told the White Sox the call should not have been made.

White Sox general manager Chris Getz confirmed Friday that the team spoke with MLB, but wouldn’t disclose what was said other than that he was told the umpire’s ability to call interference, in general, is a judgement call.

“There is discretion,” Getz said.

That means the umpire wasn’t obligated to call interference on Vaughn for accidentally (not to mention barely) stepping in the shortstop’s path to the ball, but he also wasn’t technically incorrect for doing so, no matter how ticky-tacky.

And this was certainly ticky-tacky.

Down 8-2 in the final frame, the White Sox rallied for four runs in the bottom of the ninth and had an opportunity to win the game with runners on first and second with one out.

Andrew Benintendi swung for an infield pop-out, and Andrew Vaughn leisurely walked back to second base as the shortstop, Gunner Henderson, moved to make the catch. The umpire called interference on Vaughn, who unintentionally stepped in the path of Henderson.

Likewise to the league’s verbal explanation, the MLB rulebook states “a runner who is adjudged to have hindered a fielder who is attempting to make a play on a batted ball is out whether it was intentional or not.” The key word here being “adjudged.”

Suffice to say the White Sox still do not agree with the umpire’s judgement.

“I don’t like the way the play was called,” White Sox manager Pedro Grifol told reporters on Friday. “I think it was called inaccurate, in my opinion. Just my opinion. I don’t think any baseball game should end like that.”

That opinion is on par with the majority of those who watched the play in person and at home, including Orioles manager Brandon Hyde.

“I feel like we escaped there,” Hyde said after the game.

The White Sox will look to put Thursday’s fiasco behind them as they take on the Orioles in game two of the series Friday at 6:40.

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