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UEFL Appeals Board Decisions: E-122 ADJ-QOCN-REPLAY(CATCH/TRAP)

Saturday, August 27, 2016

MLB Ejections 142-145 - Mike Everitt (3-6; 4 DET Tigers)

HP Umpire Mike Everitt ejected Tigers DH Victor Martinez for arguing a strike one call in the bottom of the 3rd, Tigers Hitting Coach Wally Joyner and Manager Brad Ausmus for arguing a strike three call in the bottom of the 5th, and Tigers RF JD Martinez for arguing a strike three call in the bottom of the 6th inning of the Angels-Tigers game. In the 3rd, with two out and none on, Martinez took a 0-0 fastball from Angels pitcher Brett Oberholtzer for a called first strike. Replays indicate the pitch was located over the inner half of home plate and knee high (px -.436, pz 1.580 [sz_bot 1.540]), the call was correct. In the 5th, with none out and none on, Tigers batter Ian Kinsler took a 2-2 slider from Angels pitcher Jhoulys Chacin for a called third strike. Replays indicate the pitch was located over the heart of home plate and below the hollow of the knee (px .096, pz 1.365 [sz_bot 1.510 / MOE 1.427]), the call was incorrect. In the 6th, with none out and one on, Martinez took a 1-2 fastball from Angels pitcher Chacin. Replays indicate the pitch was located over the inner half home plate and and at the hollow of the knee (px -.603, pz 1.611 [sz_bot 1.690 / MOE 1.607]), the call was correct. At the time of all four ejections, the Angels were leading, 3-1. The Angels ultimately won the contest, 3-2.

This is Mike Everitt (57)'s third, fourth, fifth, sixth ejection of the 2016 MLB regular season.
Mike Everitt now has 14 points in UEFL Standings (10 Prev + 4*[2 MLB] + 2*[2 QOCY] - 2*[4 QOCN] = 14).
Crew Chief Mike Everitt now has 14 points in Crew Division (12 Prev + 2 Correct Calls + 0 QOCN = 14).

This is the 142nd, 143rd, 144th, 145th ejection report of the 2016 regular season.
This is the 68th, 69th player ejection of 2016. Prior, to ejection the Martinezes were 1-1 & 1-3 in the contest.
This is 56th Manager ejection of 2016.
This is Detroit's 7-10th ejection of 2016, 1st in the AL Central (DET 10; CWS 7; MIN 6; CLE, KC 5).
This is Victor Martinez's first ejection since July 11, 2015 (Marty Foster; QOC = N [Balls/Strikes]).
This is Wally Joyner's first ejection since May 21, 2008 (Jim Reynolds; QOC = U [Balls/Strikes]).
This is Brad Ausmus' 3rd ejection of 2016, 1st since May 16 (Doug Eddings; QOC = N [Balls/Strikes]).
This is JD Martinez's first career MLB ejection.
This is Mike Everitt's first ejection since June 30, 2016 (Mike Matheny; QOC = Y [Replay Review]).

Wrap: Los Angeles Angels vs. Detroit Tigers, 8/27/16 | Video available via "Read more"

MLB Ejection 141 - Mike Winters (3; Bryce Harper)

HP Umpire Mike Winters ejected Nationals RF Bryce Harper for arguing a strike three call in the bottom of the 10th inning of the Rockies-Nationals game. With none out and none on in the bottom of the 10th, Harper took a 2-2 fastball from Rockies pitcher Jake McGee for a called third strike. Replays indicate the pitch was located over the outer edge of home plate and thigh high (px -.886, pz 2.259) and that all preceding pitches during the at-bat had been properly officiated, the call was correct. At the time of the ejection, the game was tied, 4-4. The Rockies ultimately won the contest, 9-4, in 11 innings.

This is Mike Winters (33)'s third ejection of the 2016 MLB regular season.
Mike Winters now has 10 points in the UEFL Standings (6 Previous + 2 MLB + 2 Correct Call = 10).
Crew Chief Mike Winters now has 4 points in Crew Division (3 Previous + 1 Correct Call = 4).

This is the 141st ejection report of the 2016 regular season.
This is the 67th player ejection of 2016. Prior to ejection, Harper was 1-4 (3 SO) in the contest.
This is Washington's 4th ejection of 2016, 4th in the AL East (ATL 7; MIA 6; NYM 5; WAS 4; PHI 1).
This is Bryce Harper's 2nd ejection of 2016, 1st since May 9 (Brian Knight; QOC = Y [Balls/Strikes]).
This is Mike Winters' 1st ejection since July 21, 2016 (AJ Pierzynski; QOC = Y-C [Obstruction]).

Wrap: Colorado Rockies vs. Washington Nationals, 8/27/16 | Video available via "Read more"

Friday, August 26, 2016

Case Play 2016-9 - A Backswing on Strike 3 [Solved]

Tampa Bay scored a double play after Ron Kulpa ruled Red Sox batter David Ortiz interfered with a catcher's attempted throw to second base, having himself struck out swinging on a 2-2 fastball.

The Play: With one out, one on (R1), and a 2-2 count, Red Sox batter David Ortiz swung at and missed a 93-mph fastball from Rays pitcher Brad Boxberger while Red Sox baserunner R1 Xander Bogaerts attempted to steal second base. Replays indicate this pitch was then caught by Rays catcher Bobby Wilson, who appeared poised to throw to second base and make a play on R1 Bogaerts, until B1 Ortiz's bat made contact with Wilson's helmet, effectively ending the catcher's throwing attempt.

HP Umpire Ron Kulpa thereafter ruled Bogaerts out for Ortiz's interference and Ortiz out on the third strike.

Question: Given the aforementioned play, what is the proper call for each of the following scenarios?
(A) Call the play as is (one out, R1, 2-2); was Kulpa's ruling correct?
(B) All else equal, the count was 2-1 (one out, R1, 2-1);
(C) All else equal, there were two outs and the third strike was dropped (two outs, R1, 2-2, Dropped 3K). Note: Part (C) calls for consideration of backswing contact so that F2 Wilson can't make any play.

Solution: The solution to this play, at the professional level, is archived at this very website from an odd Replay Review from July 5, 2014 featuring plate umpire Mike DiMuro and an overturned call at second base. In that play, DiMuro ruled the batter's backswing on a swinging third strike unintentionally struck the catcher as R1 tried stealing second base. 2B Umpire Jerry Layne initially ruled R1 out, so DiMuro's call was waived, but after a challenge that reversed Layne's call to "safe," DiMuro properly reinstated his backswing ruling and ordered the now-safe R1 back to first base as a result of the dead ball. B1, naturally, was out on the third strike.

KEY POINT: "Backswing interference" is a misnomer: Unintentional backswing contact is not interference.
(A) If the ruling is that Ortiz deliberately interfered, then a double play as the result of interference is correct. If the ruling is solely that Ortiz's forceful backswing unintentionally hit the catcher, the proper call is a dead ball strike, since follow through/backswing contact is not interference in OBR. Ortiz is out, but R1 Bogaerts is returned to first base with two out.
(B) Same as [A], except that Ortiz inherits a 2-2 count (unless he is called for "true" interference by stepping across home plate, deliberately hitting F2 with the bat, or for some other action).
(C) The inning is over and Ortiz is out, as the ball becomes dead as soon as his backswing unintentionally hits the ball. Unfortunately for the batter, this dead ball occurs during his third strike.

NOTE ABOUT RULES DIFFERENCE IN HIGH SCHOOL: Under NFHS rules, Scenario (A) results in a double play, since the follow-through contact is interference in high school (assuming R1 could have been thrown out). In NCAA/college, however, it is not interference: "on a third strike, the ball is dead; the batter is out." Oddly enough, PBUC has the exact same interpretation as NCAA ("on a third strike, the ball is dead and the batter is out"). In other words, backswing (which occurs pre-pitch) or follow-through (which occurs post-pitch) contact is interference in high school, but not in college or pro. Because of this difference, the runner is out in high school for the follow-through interference of his recently-retired teammate (e.g., B1), but not in college/pro, because in college/pro, the just-retired B1 did not commit interference, since backswing contact with the catcher is not true interference.

Official Baseball Rules Library
OBR 5.09(a)(2): "A batter is out when—A third strike is legally caught by the catcher."
OBR 6.01(a)(5): "It is interference by a batter or a runner when—Any batter or runner who has just been put out, or any runner who has just scored, hinders or impedes any following play being made on a runner. Such runner shall be declared out for the interference of his teammate."
OBR 6.03(a)(3): "A batter is out for illegal action when—He interferes with the catcher’s fielding or throwing by stepping out of the batter’s box or making any other movement that hinders the catcher’s play at home base."
OBR 6.03(a)(3) Comment: "If the batter interferes with the catcher, the plate umpire shall call 'interference.' The batter is out and the ball dead. No player may advance on such interference (offensive interference) and all runners must return to the last base that was, in the judgment of the umpire, legally touched at the time of the interference. If, however, the catcher makes a play and the runner attempting to advance is put out, it is to be assumed there was no actual interference and that runner is out—not the batter. Any other runners on the base at the time may advance as the ruling is that there is no actual interference if a runner is retired. In that case play proceeds just as if no violation had been called. If a batter strikes at a ball and misses and swings so hard he carries the bat all the way around and, in the umpire’s judgment, unintentionally hits the catcher or the ball in back of him on the backswing, it shall be called a strike only (not interference). The ball will be dead, however, and no runner shall advance on the play."

Video available via "Read more"

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

A Rare Off-The-Cowboy-Joe Double - Rule 5.06(c)(6)

After a ground ball struck 2B Umpire Joe West's foot in shallow center field, Cubs batter Willson Contreras took advantage, hustling into second base with a double as the Padres fielders recovered during Tuesday's game in San Diego.

With two out and none on, Contreras grounded a base hit up the middle and onto the outfield grass, where the ball bounced into Joe West as he began his run toward the infield, the added delay of Padre retrieval allowing Contreras to achieve second base ahead of the throw. Score it an umpire-assisted double.

Cowboy Joe West plays soccer at Petco Park.
As previously discussed in Umpire Interference, Rule 5.06(c)(6) [or 5.09(f) under old-format OBR] states that a batted ball becomes dead when, "A fair ball touches a runner or an umpire on fair territory before it touches an infielder including the pitcher, or touches an umpire before it has passed an infielder other than the pitcher; runners advance, if forced."

In regard to remedial action for this scenario, 5.06(c) continues, "The ball becomes dead and runners advance one base, or return to their bases, without liability to be put out."

Diagram of the play, which is past the infield.
Although rare, a batted ball that has already passed the entire infielder staff, only to then touch an umpire, is a live ball. This is what occurred Tuesday in San Diego, as B1 Contreras' batted fair ball bounded past at least one Padres infielder (for the sake of technicality, it was the shortstop) before touching Cowboy Joe in shallow center field, meaning that West and his crew properly kept the ball alive and in play.

Earlier this month, we explored the case of a batted ball striking a second base umpire who works inside, or on the infield grass. In that play, a batted ball deflected off the pitcher before bouncing off the second base umpire and rolling to the shortstop, who stepped on second base and threw to first for a double play. That, too, was properly officiated, as the batted ball first touched a defensive player (the pitcher) before touching an umpire. Had the ball merely passed the pitcher without him touching it, however, only to then strike the inside umpire, the proper call would be dead ball, and a one base award to the batter and any forced runners, since the pitcher is not considered a full-fledged infielder specifically for the purpose of Rule 5.06(c)(6).

Monday, August 22, 2016

Torre's Warning Leads to Coach, Not Manager, Ejections

One month ago, Joe Torre told managers to stop arguing balls and strikes with the help of video evidence to support their case, and the stats confirm, Torre's warning worked...Kind of...Maybe...Not really.

Fewer managers are getting tossed for pitches.
Since Monday July 18 and the first series since MLB's Chief Baseball Officer distributed his managerial memo, just two managers have been ejected for arguing balls and strikes.

They would be Boston's John Farrell, who was ejected by Gabe Morales on July 31 in Boston, and Milwaukee's Craig Counsell, who got the boot courtesy of Bill Miller on August 12. In both cases, the umpire's call was correct and the ejected skipper was wrong.

In comparing these two ejections over the course of 394 games and one month to the 25 managerial ball/strike ejections over 1,344 games prior to Torre's directive, we find that the rate of ejection prior to Torre's edict was one managerial ball/strike ejection per 53.76 games, compared to one such ejection per 197 games since, which is approximately a 72% drop in these types of ejection.

Gibbons has stopped getting himself run.
For example, Blue Jays Manager John Gibbons, who led baseball with six ejections from Opening Day through July 1, suddenly stopped getting ejected altogether: he has zero ejections since.

So Torre's warning worked, right? The answer is "yes," if the only consideration is whether a manager has been ejected for arguing balls and strikes. Otherwise, it's not that simple.

Since Torre's memo, more assistant coaches (bench, base, hitting, and pitching coaches, etc.) have received pitch call ejections while their respective skippers have stayed in the ballgame.

Coaches like Barry Bonds are getting ejected.
Over the same 394 game period beginning July 18, six coaches—including one assistant of an assistant—have been ejected exclusively for arguing balls and strikes: that's one ejection for every 65.67 games played. Combining all manager and coach ejections for arguing balls and strikes over that period, we see that managers/coaches have been tossed on the order of once every 49.25 games played, which is similar to the previous period's rate of 53.76 games per managerial ball/strike ejection.

Non-managerial coach ejections historically have occurred less frequently than those of managers and players: for example, just 12 coaches were ejected prior to July 18 (one per 112 games), compared to 53 players and 47 managers for that same period, meaning that coaches comprised 11% of all ejections over that time. Since then, however, coaches have made up a greater share of overall ejections, essentially doubling their ejection representation rate (six coaches / 29 ejections = 21% of ejections are coaches).

Conclusion: As was the case when baseball first introduced expanded Replay Review in 2014, ejections did not decrease as the result of MLB's attempt to ease the team-umpire relationship through a new initiative (whether via instant replay in 2014 or Torre's bulletin in July 2016); in contrast, ejections actually increased (in 2014), but more notably, the reason for ejection shifted drastically in 2014 (and 2015). Instead of getting ejected for arguing a simple out vs. safe call at first base, team personnel switched to more vehement ball/strike arguments, which effectively kept their ejection numbers at levels comparable to, and in no way less than, the previous season's.

Farrell argues 3B Coach Butterfield's ejection.
Now that baseball and Torre are trying to crack down on this ejection reason shift by telling managers to stop getting ejected under certain circumstances, teams are evolving once again: Managers are dutifully pulling back and taking a seat...while their coaches and assistants take ejections on their behalf, so as to preserve the baseball tradition that is arguing with and getting ejected by the umpire. In fact (see picture of John Farrell to the right), some coaches and assistants potentially are getting ejected so as to provide their manager with an excuse to argue with the umpire, without subjecting the skipper to an ejection, akin to the queen's sacrifice in chess, which is exactly what baseball arguments have become: a chess match.

So, has Torre's message worked? It depends on how literal you want to be.

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Case Play 2016-8 - Time Goes Out During Play [Solved]

Orlando Arcia ended up on third base after collecting his first career hit when Jean Segura threw the ball into the Brewers dugout as Arcia stood at first base.

Umpires O'Nora, Segal, Tumpane & Kellogg.
The Play: With two out and one (R3) on during Milwaukee's weekend series in Arizona, Arcia hit a line drive into right field, scoring the runner from third. When the ball was subsequently thrown back into the infield with Arcia content and standing at first base with his first career RBI single, Diamondbacks second baseman Jean Segura threw the milestone baseball toward the Brewers dugout, as is MLB tradition, where Scooter Gennett was waiting on the top step, with a foot on the warning track, to retrieve it, while 1B Umpire John Tumpane was waiting to rule on the legality of the play.

Replays indicate that HP Umpire Jeff Kellogg appeared to call "time" before F4 Segura released his throw.

Question: Given the aforementioned play, consider the following variations relative to when the plate umpire called "Time" and state where batter-runner Arcia should be placed for each scenario.
(A) Umpire calls "Time" before Segura throws the ball (as occurred during the aforementioned play).
(B) Umpire calls "Time" after Segura throws the ball, but before it arrives at the dugout (is in the air).
(C) Umpire calls "Time" after Segura's throw is caught by Gennett, who is still outside the dugout.
(D) Umpire calls "Time" after Segura's throw is caught by Gennett, who is back inside the dugout.

Solution: In general, play is suspended at the moment an umpire calls "Time" [5.12(a)]; however, ensuing action such as the departure from the playing field of a ball that had been thrown before "Time" was called, may determine certain penalties or awards to be applied during the dead ball period [6.01(h) Comment]. As such...
(A) B1 Arcia remains at first base, as "Time" had been called prior to Segura's throw.
(B) B1 Arcia is awarded third base (two bases from the time of the throw).
(C) B1 Arcia is awarded third base.
(D) B1 Arcia is awarded third base.
Final note: Gennett's actions of catching the throw on the lip of the dugout (live ball territory) simply means that the play becomes dead the moment he intentionally grabbed the ball (only applicable to scenarios (C) and (D)). The "nullify the act" portion of the interference rule means that the umpires shall apply their judgment to determine whether, if not for the interference, Segura's throw would have exited the playing field and, thus, entitled Arcia to third base.
Postscript Note: Naturally, common sense would dictate that the throw wasn't "wild" but merely a post-play courtesy for a rookie Major Leaguer who just collected his first career big league hit.

Official Baseball Rules Library
OBR 5.06(b)(4)(G): "Each runner including the batter-runner may, without liability to be put out, advance—Two bases when, with no spectators on the playing field, a thrown ball goes into the stands, or into a bench (whether or not the ball rebounds into the field), or over or under or through a field fence, or on a slanting part of the screen above the backstop, or remains in the meshes of a wire screen protecting spectators. The ball is dead. When such wild throw is the first play by an infielder, the umpire, in awarding such bases, shall be governed by the position of the runners at the time the ball was pitched; in all other cases the umpire shall be governed by the position of the runners at the time the wild throw was made."
OBR 5.12(a): "When an umpire suspends play, he shall call “Time.” At the umpire-in-chief’s call of “Play,” the suspension is lifted and play resumes. Between the call of “Time” and the call of “Play” the ball is dead."
OBR 5.12(b): "The ball becomes dead when an umpire calls 'Time.'"
OBR 6.01(d): "In case of unintentional interference with play by any person herein authorized to be on the playing field (except members of the team at bat who are participating in the game, or a base coach, any of whom interfere with a fielder attempting to field a batted or thrown ball; or an umpire) the ball is alive and in play. If the interference is intentional, the ball shall be dead at the moment of the interference and the umpire shall impose such penalties as in his opinion will nullify the act of interference."
OBR 6.01(h) Comment: "The ball is immediately dead when this signal ["Time" due to obstruction] is given; however, should a thrown ball be in flight before the obstruction is called by the umpire, the runners are to be awarded such bases on wild throws as they would have been awarded had not obstruction occurred."
Universal Ground Rules: "Ball on the top step (lip) of the dugout is in play."

Video available via "Read more"

Thursday, August 18, 2016

MLB Ejection 140 - Todd Tichenor (3; Dale Sveum)

HP Umpire Todd Tichenor ejected Royals Hitting Coach Dale Sveum for arguing a runner's lane interference call in the bottom of the 1st inning of the Twins-Royals game. With none out and none on, Royals batter Paulo Orlando bunted a 1-0 fastball from Twins pitcher Tyler Duffey to catcher Kurt Suzuki, who threw to first baseman Trevor Plouffe as Orlando arrived at first base. Replays indicate Orlando ran inside (to the left of) the lane line and thus failed to remain within the runner's lane, but that Orlando's actions in running inside the line did not interfere with Plouffe because Suzuki's throw was of poor quality and likely could not have reasonably retired the runner (the throw was to the right/foul territory side of first base), the call was incorrect.* This ruling is under review by the UEFL Appeals Board (QOC Challenge). At the time of the ejection, the Twins were leading, 1-0. The Royals ultimately won the contest, 8-1.

This is Todd Tichenor (13)'s third ejection of the 2016 MLB regular season.
Todd Tichenor now has 4 points in the UEFL Standings (6 Previous + 2 MLB - 4 Incorrect Call = 4).
Crew Chief Bill Miller now has 3 points in Crew Division (3 Previous + 0 Incorrect Call = 3).
*Wendelstedt: "The determination is not whether the throw is true, but whether it could still reasonably retire the runner." Also, regarding RLI Rule 5.09(a)(11), the following terminology is used (green = compliant):
*RLI Terms: Inside = To the left/in fair territory; Outside = To the right/foul; Within = Between the lane lines.

This is the 140th ejection report of the 2016 regular season.
This is Minnesota's 6th ejection, T-2nd in the AL Central (CWS 7; DET, MIN 6; CLE, KC 5).
This is Dale Sveum's 2nd ejection of 2016, 1st since June 10 (Chris Guccione; QOC = Y [Check Swing]).
This is Todd Tichenor's first ejection since April 27, 2016 (Don Mattingly; QOC = Y [Balls/Strikes]).

Wrap: Minnesota Twins vs. Kansas City Royals, 8/18/16 | Video available via "Read more"

MLB Ejection 139 - Scott Barry (3; Brian Butterfield)

HP Umpire Scott Barry ejected Red Sox 3B Coach Brian Butterfield for arguing a ball two call in the bottom of the 2nd inning of the Red Sox-Tigers game. With one out and one on, Tigers batter Jarrod Saltalamacchia took a 1-0 breaking ball from Red Sox pitcher Clay Buchholz for a called second ball. Replays indicate the pitch was located off the outer edge of home plate and thigh high (px -1.213, pz 1.737) while the 0-0 pitch was located over the outer half of home plate and above the midpoint (px -.468, pz 3.536 [sz_top 3.48]), the call was correct.* At the time of the ejection, the game was tied, 0-0. The Tigers ultimately won the contest, 4-3.

This is Scott Barry (87)'s third ejection of the 2016 MLB regular season.
Scott Barry now has 15 points in the UEFL Standings (11 Previous + 2 MLB + 2 Correct Call = 15).
Crew Chief Jerry Layne now has 9 points in Crew Division (8 Previous + 1 Correct Call = 9).
*The overturned Replay Review call during the immediately preceding play (Jerry Layne - Catch/Trap) is considered secondary (or contributory) to the primary argument over balls/strikes.

This is the 139th ejection report of the 2016 regular season.
This is Boston's 6th ejection of 2016, 2nd in the AL East (TOR 14; BOS 6; BAL 3; TB 2; NYY 1).
This is Brian Butterfield's 1st ejection since July 6, 2014 (Hunter Wendelstedt; QOC = Y [Balk]).
This is Scott Barry's first ejection since May 4, 2016 (Paul Molitor; QOC = Y [Balls/Strikes]).

Wrap: Boston Red Sox vs. Detroit Tigers, 8/18/16 | Video available via "Read more"

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

MLB Ejection 138 - DJ Reyburn (3; Frank Menechino)

HP Umpire DJ Reyburn ejected Marlins Assistant Hitting Coach Frank Menechino for arguing a strike one call in the top of the 9th inning of the Marlins-Reds game. With none out and none on, Marlins batter Ichiro Suzuki took a 0-0 fastball from Reds pitcher Tony Cingrani for a called first strike. Replays indicate the pitch was located over the heart of home plate and below the midpoint (px 0.264, pz 3.206 [sz_top 3.390]), the call was correct. At the time of the ejection, the Reds were leading, 6-3. The Reds ultimately won the contest, 6-3.

This is DJ Reyburn (70)'s third ejection of the 2016 MLB regular season.
DJ Reyburn now has 11 points in the UEFL Standings (7 Previous + 2 MLB + 2 Correct Call = 11).
Crew Chief Larry Vanover now has 9 points in Crew Division (8 Previous + 1 Correct Call = 9).

This is the 138th ejection report of the 2016 regular season.
This is Miami's 6th ejection of 2016, 2nd in the NL East (ATL 7; MIA 6; NYM 5; WAS 3; PHI 1).
This is Frank Menechino's first career MLB ejection.
This is DJ Reyburn's first ejection since July 7, 2016 (Coco Crisp; QOC = N [Balls/Strikes]).

Wrap: Miami Marlins vs. Cincinnati Reds, 8/16/16 | Video N/A

Injury - Hunter Wendelstedt Leaves After Hit to Head

Umpire Hunter Wendelstedt was injured by a foul ball to the mask and left Monday's game at Yankee Stadium.

With none out in the bottom of the 2nd inning of the Blue Jays-Yankees game, Yankees batter Brian McCann fouled a 2-2 knuckleball from Jays pitcher R.A. Dickey into HP Umpire Wendelstedt's traditional-style facemask.

Wendelstedt remained in the game in the immediate aftermath of the foul ball, and completed the second inning after which he was replaced for the remainder of the contest behind the plate by 2B Umpire Scott Barry with Crew Chief Jerry Layne and Tripp Gibson holding their positions at first and third base, respectively.