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Saturday, September 21, 2019

Astros decline to eject fan who interfered with Jose Altuve ball

Mookie Betts fan interference

The Houston Astros declined to eject the fan who controversially interfered with Jose Altuve’s batted ball in right field during Game 4 of the ALCS on Wednesday.

According to Boston Red Sox reporter Chris Cotillo of MassLive.com, Astros security only gave a warning to fan Troy Caldwell rather than eject him.

Caldwell reached for a ball hit by Altuve during the first inning that appeared to be heading over the wall in right field for a 2-run home run. Caldwell’s attempt to catch the ball interfered with Mookie Betts’ ability to catch it, and the ball ended up being knocked back into the field of play.

Umpire Joe West called it fan interference on the field, which would make Altuve out. MLB replay was unable to find evidence to overturn the call, so they let it stand, and Altuve lost a homer.

The distinction between whether fan interference results in a batter being out or not depends on where the interference occurs; if it’s within the field of play, then a batter is out due to the interference. If the interference occurs in the stands, the batter would not be out.

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