Are we getting to a point where challenges are getting…dare I say, being used properly? We might not be there yet, but we’re getting close.
May 6th, Giants vs Pirates – the walk off replay.
Starling Marte nearly pulled off one of the most exciting finishes we’ve seen all season, but was called out at the plate. But after review, it was revealed that Marte was indeed safe at the plate, which set off a different kind of Marte partay at PNC Park.
May 8th, Rockies vs Rangers – a tough call.
Whatever the call on the field was would have stood on this one. Did Michael McKenry get his hand to home plate before the tag? Did Robinson Chirinos tag McKenry first? Whatever the umpire called would stand – there wasn’t really anything definitive in either direction. The out call made on the field stood, and McKenry was still out, even though there wasn’t much evidence in either direction – the call was just that close.
May 9th, Indians vs Rays – first. inning. challenges.
Unlike the challenge you’ll see next, I can understand Joe Maddon’s logic with this challenge – you have Cleveland’s best pitcher this year, Corey Kluber, on the hill, and baserunners could be at a premium. The bad part about this play was that it really didn’t matter – after the call was oveturned, Ben Zobrist was thrown out trying to steal second as James Loney struck out to end the inning. So..that happened.
May 9th, Royals vs Mariners – more. first. inning. challenges.
The first inning challenge is something I despise, and the Mariners challenged another silly play on Friday. Here, they were challenging if Robinson Cano held the bag at second long enough for it to be an out. The safe call on the field was reversed, but really, what did Seattle gain from this? The play didn’t wipe out the run that scored. It didn’t take a particularly swift baserunner off base. Really, all it did was make the inning end a little sooner, as Sal Perez grounded into a double play following the challenge to end the inning. It just seemed like there was very little reward here, even though Lloyd McClendon’s come came up on the right side of this one.