Lineup (click for larger version)…

Drew Smyly

Playing A Little Pepper

If you missed yesterday’s post, we had a full rundown of the Rays protesting yesterday’s loss, why the Rays will probably lose the protest, and what happens if they actually win the protest…There have been 10 protests in the last 10 seasons with only one being upheld. This is believed to be the fourth protest during a Rays game and the first since 2003 against the Red Sox when the Rays were batting and a catch followed by a runner being doubled-up at second base was changed to a hit when the umpires talked and ruled no catch. But the Red Sox argued that the runner on first should have been called out on a force out since there was no catch and the throw beat the runner to second. The umpires agreed and called the runner out. Lou Piniella played the game under protest. However the Rays eventually won and then dropped the protest…The Rays have outscored their opponents 90-63 in August and are still just 10-11 during that span. Based on the Pythagorean win formula, a team with 90 runs scored and 63 runs allowed over 21 games would be expected to go 14-7 over that span…Down on the Farm [boxscores] Mike Montgomery gave up 5 runs (4 earned) over 5.2 innings with 3 strikeouts and 4 walks in the Bulls’ 7-4 loss in 10 innings. Vince Belnome had 2 hits including his 10th home run. In single-A, David DeJesus continued his rehab assignment with a single and 2 walks, playing left field. Ryan Hanigan went 0-4, playing all 9 innings.

Game Graph

[Will be up at game time]

Source: FanGraphs




  1. Chris Wise says:

    Trivial correction. Montgomery only went 3 ⅔ innings. His second half has been awful.

  2. Dave L says:

    Regardless of the chronology of the actual technical merits of the Protest, winning it would be an attack on the zeitgeist of MLB and strike a blow against two of its main hot button issues.

    Firstly MLB has emphasized during this entire replay experiment that the most important aspect of the replay system would be in getting the call right. Upholding the protest would in effect be that of going back to the bad call on the field call which was shown to be incorrect by visual evidence. So the spirit of the argument is to block a corrected call on a technicality. That would be hard for MLB to sanction.

    Secondly the argument for overturning also involves another issue hot in MLB HQ these days which is speed of play. There is talk of the commissioner instituting a pitcher/batter clock to speed up the pace of the games and may be the new commisioners first edict as noted many baseball insiders. Buerhle is the poster boy for a 'good' pitcher while ironically the epitome of the villian pitcher in this scenario was on our mound.

    So the effect of overturning would be to reward further delays in the future to add the dithering pitcher getting intimate with a rosin bag and doing idle mound maintainance to add to the already hated manager trotting out while looking backward to the dugout for guidance while small talking the Ump to buy time. MLB is wanting to encourage more Buerhle-like alacrity and discourage Helli-esque dawdling so this thing is an extreme reach at best.

    Actually the second rule which Todd Kalas pointed out at the time which gives the Umpire discretion to make the call is just vague enough to make sure in the end the correct call stands damn the technicalities.

    One would have to be a lawyer AND a fierce Rays partisan, or a guy like Maddon who is always the smartest guy in the stadium to argue this DOA protest.


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