The umpiring crew that was working the Minnesota Twins-Tampa Bay Rays game at Tropicana Field on Tuesday night completely botched one of Yunel Escobar’s at-bats, and instant replay somehow didn’t help. Escobar struck out in the bottom of the fifth, but the question of whether he fouled off a pitch appeared to mess everything up.
Why didn’t reviewing the sequence of pitches help? We have no idea. If you skip ahead to the 1:22 mark of the video above, you’ll see the pitch sequence to Escobar. The count was clearly 2-1 when he started to swing at a pitch that was up in the zone but stopped. It was unclear if he fouled it off or if it simply deflected off the catcher’s glove, but home plate umpire Paul Schreiber appeared to rule it a ball. That would have made the count 3-1.