Saturday, September 2, 2023

MLB Ejection 218 - CB Bucknor (1; Kevin Cash)

HP Umpire CB Bucknor ejected Rays manager Kevin Cash (pitch clock violation call [automatic ball]; QOCN) in the bottom of the 5th inning of the #Rays-#Guardians game. With two out and none on, Bucknor called Rays pitcher Zack Littell for a pitch clock violation prior to a 0-2 pitch to Guardians batter Andres Gimenez. Replays indicate Littell indeed did not begin his delivery prior to the expiration of time, but that Guardians batter Gimenez first failed to be in the box and alert to the pitcher prior to the 8-second mark because the clock never reset when the batter requested "Time" after the 0-1 pitch, the call was incorrect. At the time of the ejection, the game was tied, 4-4. The Guardians ultimately won the contest, 7-6, in 11 innings.

This is CB Bucknor (54)'s 1st ejection of 2023.

This is the 218th ejection report of the 2023 MLB regular season.
This the 100th manager ejection of 2023. Ejection Tally: 100 Managers, 88 Players, 30 Coaches.
This is Tampa Bay's 5th ejection of 2023, 5th in the AL East (NYY 9; BOS 7; BAL, TOR 6; TB 5).
This is Kevin Cash's 2nd ejection of 2023, 1st since May 5 (Lance Barksdale; QOC = U [Warnings]).
This is CB Bucknor's 1st ejection since Aug 21, 2022 (Oliver Marmol; QOC = N [Balls/Strikes]).

Wednesday, August 30, 2023

Pitcher Catches Baseball with Armpit - Or Lodged Ball?

Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks pitcher Garrett Alexander caught a line drive with his armpit during an American Association game, ruled an out by the umpire but we were asked whether this is truly a legal catch or if it is a lodged ball instead.

In 2018, HP Umpire Dan Bellino "caught" a pitched ball with his armpit in Colorado and awarded baserunners a base each as the ball remained out of play, and this might be where some of the confusion comes from. Official Baseball Rule 5.06(c)(7) supports this call...for an umpire trapping the ball: "The ball becomes dead and runners advance one base, or return to their bases, without liability to be put out, when—A pitched ball lodges in the umpire’s or catcher’s mask or paraphernalia, and remains out of play, runners advance one base."

For pitcher Alexander, however, OBR 5.06(c)(7) does not directly apply (it is a batted ball, for one), so instead we turn to the MLB Umpire Manual which clarifies that, yes, similar (but different!) lodged ball rules apply to infielders, too: "If a batted or thrown ball inadvertently goes inside a player or coach’s uniform, lodges in the catcher’s face mask or paraphernalia, or is intentionally placed inside a player’s uniform (e.g., in a pants pocket), the umpire shall call “Time.”  The umpire will, using common sense and fair play, place all runners in such a manner that, in the umpire’s judgment, will nullify the action of the ball going out of play."

The primary difference (other than pitched/thrown/batted) is twofold. First, the Colorado play involved an umpire not a player interacting with a ball, and second, the MLBUM interpretation requires the ball actually go inside a player/coach's uniform or lodge in the catcher's equipment.

Because the ball never went inside Alexander's uniform, it was accessible to the player, and (if you want to take it step further in OBR 5.06(c)(7) language) did not remain out of play, it is considered in play and a legal catch.

Video as follows:

Sunday, August 27, 2023

MLB Ejections 216-7 - David Rackley (3-4; OAK x2)

HP Umpire David Rackley ejected A's RF Seth Brown and manager Mark Kotsay (strike two call; QOCN) in the top of the 6th inning of the #Athletics-#WhiteSox game. With two out and two on, Brown took a 2-1 changeup from White Sox pitcher Mike Clevinger for a called second strike before striking out swinging on a subsequent pitch. Replays indicate the 2-1 pitch was located over the inner edge of home plate and below the hollow of the knee (px 0.84, pz 1.43 [sz_bot 1.65 / RAD 1.53 / MOE 1.45]), the call was incorrect.* At the time of the ejections, the White Sox were leading, 3-1. The White Sox ultimately won the contest, 6-1.

These are David Rackley (86)'s 3rd and 4th ejections of 2023.
*This pitch was located 0.24 vertical inches from being deemed correct.

These are the 216th and 217th ejection reports of the 2023 MLB regular season.
This the 88th player ejection of 2023. This is the 99th manager ejection of 2023.
Ejection Tally: 99 Managers, 88 Players, 30 Coaches.
This is Oakland's 8th ejection of 2023, T-1st in the AL West (OAK, SEA 8; LAA, TEX 7; HOU 4).
This is Seth Brown's 1st ejection since June 23, 2022 (Nic Lentz; QOC = N [Balls/Strikes]).
This is David Rackley's 3/4th ejection of 2023, 1st since June 21 (Joey Gallo; QOC = Y [Balls/Strikes]).