September 1, 2021

Did Yadier Molina Interfere by Waving his Hand?

How Do You See This Play?

Did Yadier Molina Interfere by Waving his Hand?

Yadier Molina hits a dribbler near the 1B line. The pitcher comes to field the ball and throw home to force the runner from 3B at the plate. But while heading to 1B, Molina appears to wave his hand in an attempt to block or distract the fielder. Was this interference? It was not called as interference by the umpires. Did they miss the call?

If Molina was judged to interfere, he would have been called out and the runner advancing to home would have been called out, too.


6.01 Interference, Obstruction, and Catcher Collisions

(a) Batter or Runner Interference

It is interference by a batter or a runner when:

(7) If, in the judgment of the umpire, a batter-runner willfully and deliberately interferes with a batted ball or a fielder in the act of fielding a batted ball, with the obvious intent

to break up a double play, the ball is dead; the umpire shall call the batter-runner out for interference and shall call out the runner who had advanced closest to the home plate regardless where the double play might have been possible. In no event shall bases be run because of such interference (see Rule 6.01(j));




Vincenzo Russo

The position of the runner Is not relevant because the play Is towards home not from vicinity of homeplate towards first (in that case the runner must advance inside the running lane). Still that’s not a double play scenario. Then I have batter-runner out for interference and runners back to the last occupied base.

Vincenzo Russo

Sorry, didn’t understand bases were full. Then double play scenario, Molina out for interference, R3 out too, the other runners back to second and first.


At 0:25, you see the BR is perhaps 8′ from the fielder at the time the ball is fielded, and taking a legal approach to the base (he’s both in the first 45 feet so the runner’s lane is irrelevant in any event, and the play is being made at home, not 1B, so the lane doesn’t matter at all). No interference at that point.

At 0:28, he is avoiding the fielder who is in possession of the ball. The raised arm is the one further from the play. Importantly, the fielder made the out at home, so there’s a solid indication the BR removed himself sufficiently from the play such that the defense could record the out. I also don’t see any hesitation on the part of the defense that could have cost the out at 1B.

Did he choose the basepath that made the play harder for the defense? No doubt. Was that choice illegal? No. While in that legal basepath did he interfere with the fielding or throw? Not in my judgment.


Either a fielder is in the act of fielding or he’s in the act of throwing. He can’t simultaneously be doing both. I have intentional interference with a thrown ball. Batter runner out, return R-3 to third base.

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it appears that the batter/runner was out of the line to first deliberately interfering with the fielder who was in the act of fielding and throwing the ball. Therefore, the batter-runner should be called out as well as the runner advancing to Home plate.

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