The Boston Red Sox and the Houston Astros played a tight game on Sunday night, with the BoSox walking off the defending World Series champs 6-5 with a Mitch Moreland RBI single in the ninth. Before that, however, there was an extremely questionable call in the seventh inning that could have given the ‘Stros a slim lead.
With the game tied 5-5 and the speedy Jose Altuve standing on third base, Yuli Gurriel hit a soft mini-chopper towards Boston shortstop Xander Bogaerts, who was playing shallow. Bogarts had plenty of time to throw Gurriel out at first, but since there was only one out he elected to throw home in an effort to keep the run from scoring.
The throw was high, forcing catcher Sandy Leone to make a leaping grab, before diving back to the plate to tag a sliding Altuve. The call on the field was that Altuve was out, which Houston manager A.J. Hinch immediately challenged.
Judge for yourself:
The umpire crew took over four minutes to get a final decision, but ultimately the call on the field was upheld. Altuve was out, the game stayed tied, and the Astros eventually lost, meaning they cling to a narrow 2.5 game lead in the AL West over Oakland.
After the game, Hinch sounded off on the call and suggested replay was a system that can’t be trusted.
ICYMI #Astros manager AJ Hinch on Jose Altuve called out at the plate in the 7th inning of the Red Sox 6-5 win.Hinch challenged & the play was not overturned by replay officials:"He did get in there. It's clear as day..We've got to have a system that we can rely on,that we trust" pic.twitter.com/UZ4yennsMg
— Mark Berman (@MarkBermanFox26) September 10, 2018
Houston outfielder Josh Reddick was also angry about the play, but choose a much simpler way to convey the message:
— Josh Reddick (@RealJoshReddick) September 10, 2018
It certainly looks like Altuve was safe, which raises the question of what the replay officials were looking at. Did they have all the available angles? Did they have an angle that wasn’t available to those watching on TV? Did they simply decide it was too close of a play to overturn the call on the field? It all remains a mystery.