Seattle Mariners acting manager Robby Thompson was forced to use a different pitcher from the one he wanted during the ninth inning of Thursday’s loss to the Boston Red Sox, all because he made one little mistake.
The Mariners led the Red Sox 7-2 entering the bottom of the ninth at Fenway Park, but closer Tom Wilhelmsen was shaky. He issued two walks and allowed a single and double, so Thompson came out to pull him. Thompson had two pitchers warming up in the bullpen — right-hander Yoervis Medina, and lefty Oliver Perez. He wanted to bring in Medina to face switch hitter Shane Victorino, but he accidentally pointed to the bullpen with his left arm, which gave the signal to the bullpen to bring in the left-handed pitcher.
Here’s a GIF of the signal:
Though Thompson corrected himself and tapped his right arm, the umpires told Medina to go back to the bullpen, and they forced the Mariners to go with Perez.
Perez allowed a 2-run single to Victorino and an RBI single to Dustin Pedroia before striking out David Ortiz in the lefty-lefty matchup Thompson wanted. After striking out Ortiz, Thompson brought Medina in. He struggled as much as Wilhelmsen and Ortiz did.
Medina allowed an RBI single to tie the game and a walk-off RBI single to Daniel Nava to lose the game 8-7.
What an idiotic situation. Sure, Thompson made a mistake, but he quickly corrected himself. Why wouldn’t they allow him to use the pitcher he wanted in that situation? What a dumb rule.
GIF via DeadspinGoogle+