That was absolutely bonkers. The entire game between the Red Sox and Rays tonight was wild, being that it was an ALDS Game Three in a tied series that went 13 innings. But the way it just ended? Holy smokes.
So, in the top of the 13th, it looked like the Rays had taken the lead, finally, and had room to score even more. But a truly bizarre play actually wound up costing them a run, and then ultimately the game. Here’s the play, with Kevin Kiermaier sending one out deep, seemingly scoring Yandy Diaz after the ball bounces off the wall, then off the outfielder, then out of play:
Make it make sense pic.twitter.com/QyLp3UTpdL
— Tampa Bay Rays (@RaysBaseball) October 11, 2021
It seemed like everyone watching had never seen that before. At least not exactly like that. The *logical* thing would be to look at where the runners were when the ball went out of play, and advance them an additional base after the base to which they were headed. In that case, you’d have Diaz scoring, and Kiermaier on third.
But the umpires huddled and determined that it should be ruled a double, meaning Kiermaier to second, and Diaz, who would’ve scored EASILY, heading back to third. Naturally, the next batter struck out.
And naturally, because the baseball gods love messy drama, the Red Sox immediately walked it off in the bottom of the frame:
— MLB (@MLB) October 11, 2021
Man. Baseball. Freaking crazy stuff.
Maybe the craziest part? It seems the umpires GOT THE CALL RIGHT in the top of the 13th:
That’s not particularly unclear, is it? But that seems like a screw-job of a rule, right? I mean, Diaz was absolutely going to score, and it was the RED SOX’S FAULT that the ball went out of play. This isn’t a ball getting stuck, randomly, in the ivy at Wrigley Field or bouncing, on its own, out of play. It was OFF the Red Sox player. This rule, applied to situations like this, needs to change. Otherwise, in the right situation, couldn’t an outfielder “accidentally” swipe a gapper into the stands to save a run from scoring?
In any case, kudos to the Red Sox for getting out of the top of the inning, and then walking it off in the 13th. They do deserve SOME credit here. The series is now 2-1 Sox. One more win, and they’re on to the ALCS.