Wednesday, June 12, 2024

Ejections Aplenty from Pitch Clock Strikeout to Game-Losing Missed Base Appeal

In just one minor league game, we had ejections for arguing a pitch clock violation strikeout, a missed base touch appeal resulting in a loss, a water cooler thrown from the dugout onto the field (oh and a "simple" balls/strikes argument too). HP Umpire Kyle Stutz ejected both managers—Midland's Gregorio Petit and San Antonio's Luke Montz—in a 4-3 ballgame that ended with a base touch appeal that RockHounds runner Denzel Clarke missed third on what initially was a game-winning 3-RBI home run by Cooper Bowman that instead turned into a game-ending double when umpires affirmed San Antonio's appeal.

The ejections began early when HP Umpire Stutz ejected RockHounds manager Petit for arguing a strike call in the 2nd inning. In the 4th, HP Umpire Stutz also ran Missions manager Luke Montz after batter Brandon Valenzuela struck out due to a pitch clock violation with a two-strike count. Valenzuela had stepped out of the box after strike two, but didn't appear to request "Time" from the umpire, meaning the pitch clock continued to run until Stutz called Valenzuela for failing to be in the batter's box and alert to the pitcher by the eight-second mark.

Finally, the game ended with fanfare as with San Antonio holding a 4-2 lead with two outs in the bottom of the 9th inning, with runners at the corners, Midland batter Cooper Bowman appeared to hit a game-winning three-RBI home run to left field to seal a 5-4 final in favor of the RockHounds. However, after the play, San Antonio appealed that Midland baserunner R1 Denzel Clarke failed to touch third base, a ruling affirmed for the third out of the inning, meaning that both Clarke and batter-runner Bowman's runs did not count.

Official Baseball Rule 5.08(a) states, "A run is not scored if the runner advances to home base during a play in which the third out is made (1) by the batter-runner before he touches first base; (2) by any runner being forced out; or (3) by a preceding runner who is declared out because they failed to touch one of the bases."

To get the out, OBR 5.09(c)(2)'s appeal process was invoked: "Any runner shall be called out, on appeal, when with the ball in play, while advancing or returning to a base, they fail to touch each base in order before they, or a missed base, are tagged."

Accordingly, the final score reverted to a 4-3 tally favoring San Antonio (lead runner Brennan Milone's run counted, as he preceded Clark on the bases), with several ejections following, including one for throwing a water cooler onto the field from the now-losing Midland dugout.

Video as follows:
Alternate Link: Ejections lottery strikes AA with pitch clock strikeout, missed base touch appeal


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