CHICAGO -- Manny Acta rolled his eyes and smiled. The Indians manager had been asked for his opinion on the obstruction play that took place in the fourth inning of Tuesday's 8-7 marathon loss to the White Sox that lasted 14 frames.
"Oh, God," Acta replied prior to Wednesday's game in Chciago. "Do you have 30 minutes?"
The play in question occurred with Michael Brantley on first base with no outs in the fourth. Shin-Soo Choo pulled a pitch from White Sox righty Gavin Floyd into right field for what appeared to be an easy double. When Brantley rounded second base, Chicago shortstop Alexei Ramirez was in the runner's path.
Brantley stumbled to the dirt on the play before recovering and advancing to third base. Choo, on the other hand, had to pull up and retreat to first base to avoid a dicey situation. Acta felt that the umpires should have allowed Choo to move up to second base, considering the circumstances.
"It's unbelievable," Acta said, "that the defense committed the obstruction and the offense was penalized. It's a sure double. The ball went by the right fielder. My guy should've been on second base. ... I still feel that it should've been a judgment call."
Acta held a lengthy discussion on the field with the umpires before finally heading back to the dugout. Unsatisfied with the crew's explanation, Acta joked that the ruling could open the door for a new defensive strategy.
"Can I teach my shortstop from now on now to tackle every runner that goes through second base?" Acta said. "Because what's the ruling going to be? Obstruction, he gets third base. And then the guy who hit the ball, well, let's see if he knows the rulebook.
"That has to be brought up to whoever is supervising these guys or the league. It has to. Imagine if every team now teaches their shortstop to do that. No one is going to be able to score on a ball in the gap.
"I don't know. I thought that it wasn't fair."