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Reds manager Bryan Price was ejected after umpires upheld incorrect call with replay review

Apr 27, 2014, 6:00 PM EDT

Bryan Price Bryan Price

In Sunday’s series finale in Atlanta, Braves center fielder B.J. Upton drew a one-out walk in the bottom of the fourth inning against Reds starter Johnny Cueto. After striking out Freddie Freeman, Cueto tried to pick off Upton at first base before throwing his first pitch to Justin Upton. It was a close play, but first base umpire Greg Gibson ruled Upton safe. Reds manager Bryan Price jogged out of the dugout and conversed with Gibson before asking for a review.

Slow-motion replays clearly showed first baseman Joey Votto‘s glove on top of Upton’s hand before getting back to the first base bag. But after reviewing the play for several minutes, the umpires upheld their ruling that Upton was safe. Price came back out of the dugout. He was warned that if he continued to pursue the matter, that he would be ejected. Price continued walking back out onto the field and was promptly thrown out.

Price wasn’t angry, didn’t raise his voice or show up the umpires. One simply isn’t allowed to continue arguing once a decision has been made after replay review, and that’s why Price was ejected.

You can watch how everything transpired here:

This incident showed the imperfections of Major League Baseball’s implementation of replay review. First, the umpires had the necessary technology and still got the call wrong. Second, their incorrect ruling left the Reds without any challenges for the rest of the game. If it’s the sixth inning, it’s not a huge deal, but this was the first inning — plenty of time for the umpires to make another questionable call. Third, Price was ejected for correctly wanting to hear exactly why the umpires ruled Upton safe. Had Price been belligerent, his ejection would have been justified, but I’m sure he was as curious as the rest of us watching at home.

Thankfully for the Reds, Upton didn’t come around to score. The game remained in a scoreless tie until Freddie Freeman delivered a walk-off RBI single in the bottom of the tenth inning.

  1. chc4 - Apr 27, 2014 at 6:10 PM

    If that’s the only angle of the play they have on video then I understand the call. He certainly looks out but you can’t tell exactly when Votto’s glove touches Upton’s hand. People can complain all they want but there was no *conclusive* evidence to overturn the call. It’s gotta be 100% obvious and that video was not.

    • Kevin S. - Apr 27, 2014 at 6:21 PM

      I have to agree. Without another camera angle, you can’t tell for sure that the glove got back to Upton’s hand. It probably did, but the umpire had a much better angle on that than the camera view we got.

    • moogro - Apr 27, 2014 at 6:26 PM

      Clearly you don’t have good enough vision to comment on this either way. You’ll see by the thumbs. It’s not that close.

      Imagine how bad the umpire’s vision is to miss this on slo-mo replay. Either that, or MLB didn’t prepare enough to start the season by doing the work of getting all the good camera feeds. It seems like the latter since there’s been a few of these, so it’s on MLB. They are not professional.

      • chc4 - Apr 27, 2014 at 7:16 PM

        Or clearly you don’t since the call was upheld. As I stated, he sure looks out but that’s not the burden of proof.

        And if you seriously judge comment by thumbs up/thumbs down, then you’re dumber than you appear. And that’s really, really dumb.

      • moogro - Apr 27, 2014 at 8:16 PM

        I’m sorry I hurt you, I didn’t mean that. Please forgive me.

      • chc4 - Apr 27, 2014 at 10:00 PM

        You’re 0 for 2 on the thumbs so I can’t take your feedback seriously. Douche.

    • moogro - Apr 27, 2014 at 6:29 PM

      Focus on 109-110. Votto’s glove is smashing the ground and his hand and crumbling, and his hand is off the base.

    • kardshark1 - Apr 27, 2014 at 6:57 PM

      I must be Superman, cause I can clearly see he’s out. I can tell the exact moment Votto’s glove makes the tag because Upton’s hand changes direction slightly to the left from the force of the glove’s impact – not to mention the glove’s web caves in a little bit at the moment of impact. Thin air doesn’t make these two phenomenons happen. There has to be force of an impact involved.

      It’s amazing two people such as you and I can look at the same video and see it so differently. The brain is a funny thing.

      • smoothaswilkes - Apr 27, 2014 at 8:45 PM

        he looked out to me too but, damn, what video quality are you watching that you can see “the glove’s web caves in a little bit”? Seriously, all I can see is a blackish blob hitting Upton on the arm at 1:10. I don’t know the direction that tag turn Upton’s wrist but it clearly is touching. Then again, angle could be wrong. The brain is pretty funny that way.

      • kardshark1 - Apr 28, 2014 at 2:25 AM

        Upton’s hand is actually pushed about 5-6 inches to the left. He almost misses the bag wide left because of it. As far as the glove… I feel like I have 40/20 vision, cause it’s amazing somebody with eyes doesn’t see it: Votto starts his swipe, the glove is straight and skinny, and as soon as Upton’s hand starts going left, the gloves scrunches up and bends back cause obviously it makes contact with an object impeding its path; Upton’s hand.

        Imagine if you saw a rear end collision from directly behind at ground level. You don’t see the contact, but you see the hood and fenders of the car scrunch up like an accordion. It’s pretty obvious the car ran into something to cause this to happen. Well I’m seeing Votto’s glove from behind and at ground level doing the same exact thing.

    • thiruc - Apr 28, 2014 at 3:00 PM

      It IS conclusive. The tag was clearly on top the gloved-hand of the runner.

      However, the umpires did the right call throwing out the coach for arguing a Review, right or wrong.

  2. seanwasamarine - Apr 27, 2014 at 6:18 PM

    Joe West or CB Bucknor must have been watching the replay.

  3. Professor Fate - Apr 27, 2014 at 6:21 PM

    It was an out. The ump blew the original call. The review blew the call in not overturning the original blown call. On top of that, it took an awful long time to confirm the blown call with a blown replay call. Awful lot of blowin’ goin’ on.

    • Francisco (FC) - Apr 27, 2014 at 9:16 PM

      We’ll the man on first WAS B.J. so it’s understandable.

  4. thomas844 - Apr 27, 2014 at 6:30 PM

    Interesting fact: This is the first time a Reds manager has been ejected from a game since 2011.

    • mazblast - Apr 27, 2014 at 10:19 PM

      That says more about the prior manager than anything. Dusty was too busy sleeping or playing with his idiotic wristbands or chewing on the toothpick to get off his rear.

  5. chiadam - Apr 27, 2014 at 6:50 PM

    He was out. MLB has completely wet the bed with their replay system, and I don’t want to hear about it being a new process. Replay is supposed to correct a blown call. In most sports, it does. In baseball, it does not.

    • paperlions - Apr 27, 2014 at 7:52 PM

      Bull. In the NHL, plenty of replays fail to overturn what seem to be clear erroneous calls. In the NFL, not only to they fail to fix errors, they often change correct calls to be wrong.

      MLBs system already works at least as well as any other pro replay system….in part because no one else has set a particularly high bar to clear.

      • Jim Abbott's Right-Hand Man - Apr 27, 2014 at 8:39 PM

        NFL refs routinely blow calls even when given a chance to review them with a replay.

        Shouldn’t be a surprise that it’ll happen now and again in baseball too.

        It happens. Still better than having no replay at all, though.

      • chiadam - Apr 27, 2014 at 8:55 PM

        You are aware that replay in the NHL is only to confirm or disallow goal, right? What sorts of calls are you yammering about?

  6. sisqsage - Apr 27, 2014 at 7:28 PM

    Cueto looks like Richard Sherman.

    • paperlions - Apr 27, 2014 at 7:53 PM

      About as much as Jeremy Lin looks like Jackie Chan.

      • Francisco (FC) - Apr 27, 2014 at 9:18 PM

        Come on paper, cut the person some slack, clearly the whites of their eyes are extremely similar. That has to count for something.

  7. serbingood - Apr 27, 2014 at 7:31 PM

    The umps in NY were not looking at the grassy knoll. It’s obvious the out came from there, Just look.

  8. watchfullhose - Apr 27, 2014 at 8:17 PM

    What a load of garbage. I refuse to believe that umps can’t get that call correct. Their massive egos just won’t let them admit that they were wrong.

  9. paco53 - Apr 27, 2014 at 9:12 PM

    I am a high school ump. I am not a professional. I am not in the same category as pro umps because they are awesome (most of the time.) I know it takes a long time and effort to get into the professional ranks.

    But, I thought he was out when I saw it in real time and the replay showed that he was clearly out. I would like to know what angle they were using in NY. It could not have been the one they showed on television.

    • marmac2768 - Apr 28, 2014 at 1:44 PM

      paco53, I was an umpire for 27 years in every level, LL, American Legion, High School, USSSA, AAU, JUCO, NCAA, and, being from Florida, several major league spring training game ($250 a pop!). You are correct, those guys are awesome! You know the angle thing. The TV broadcast guys showed only 1 angle and that is only in 2D, not 3D, and I think that was the problem. The audience, including the Jumbotron replay, only saw the one angle. I am sure that the guys in NY saw something else and upheld it based on that one replay. I wish that MLB will show ALL of the angles and why it was upheld.

  10. Aaron Saylor - Apr 27, 2014 at 9:24 PM

    The replay is unclear if the review officials allow for the possibility that the runner’s hand is protected by an invisible force field that keeps Votto’s glove from making contact. Or, perhaps the runner’s glove and Votto’s glove both contain magnets that repel each other. It’s possible. Certainly possible enough to justify the call, right?.

  11. opiedamus - Apr 27, 2014 at 10:13 PM

    Was @ the game, 2nd row, directly to right of
    Braves’ dugout. Close as hell and bang bang.
    There was another angle. I thought he was out,
    but 2nd angle had me reconsider. My guess, is
    that the other angle caused them a moment of pause.
    Funny part is they thru another coach out too.

    Great game all in all. If you appreciate pitching,
    they pitched their arses off!

  12. mazblast - Apr 27, 2014 at 10:22 PM

    I can already read the Reds’ beat reporter’s take on this in tomorrow paper, since he’s basically a sock puppet for management. “We didn’t get that call in the 4th, and although he didn’t score, it still cost us the game we lost in the 10th. Because we say so, because we love to whine.”

  13. eagles512 - Apr 27, 2014 at 10:30 PM

    Can’t blame Price. He’s clearly out. Umps need to be punished.

  14. padraighansen - Apr 27, 2014 at 11:03 PM

    Pathetic might be too kind.

  15. musketmaniac - Apr 28, 2014 at 12:04 AM

    They blew a call today in the pirate cards game, cost the pirates a few runs but not the game. The umpire was clearly not in position to make the call, and guessed, video could not refute it.

  16. bronx77 - Apr 28, 2014 at 12:54 AM

    Am I the only one who thinks baseballs replay system is better then footballs already? Maybe it’s just the games I watch but most of the time the process works. This was an unfortunate situation because that angle is inconclusive. I have watched A LOT of games this year because I bought the at bat premium package which is amazing. So maybe I just am not seeing all the bad calls people keep talking about

  17. sawxalicious - Apr 28, 2014 at 3:04 AM

    Maybe I’m in the minority here, but I really dislike the one challenge and done scenario baseball currently has. Seems to me the ENTIRE reason for replay is the make sure the calls are CORRECT. Some think managers would be challenging left and right, making games last ten hours or so. I think a good fix would be that if the person reviewing the video sees that a manager is blatantly making a challenge on a play that is obviously called correctly the first time by the umps, THEN he is penalized by having his challenges taken away ( and maybe ejected to heavily discourage unnecessary challenges). This would be like when a judge reviews a lawsuit and makes the call that it is frivolous and dismisses it. Thoughts?

  18. ltpm3 - Apr 28, 2014 at 5:38 AM

    This has happened several times to the Red Sox even to the extent that MLB apologized for the error then turned around and did the same thing the next night. The instant replay is a total failure, not because of the tape they have to look at but the failure of the umpires doing the reviewing to go against the umpires calls on the field. Maybe they don’t want to make them look bad, but in all reality they are making the umpires and their decisions look like fools who cant do their jobs correctly. They have made calls that were so bad they changed the outcome of the games and this is exactly what the instant replay was supposed to prevent …. it hasn’t. Thank goodness for the Trinitrons, they show just how bad the calls are!!

  19. bengalsucker - Apr 28, 2014 at 8:41 AM

    Baseball’s replay system is god awful. I don’t care that it’s a new system. Some of the calls they’re still blowing is unacceptable. I have to wonder what’s going on in the “central review location”. It’s just bad.

  20. thepftpoetisacrossdresser - Apr 28, 2014 at 9:35 AM

    The bogus part of all of this is….when a base runner steals 2nd…if the ball and glove beat the runner, they ALWAYS call the runner out. Now some BS technicality gets the ump out of a bad spot. He’s clearly out and you can see Votto’s glove pushing his hand away from the bag.

    This replay system needs a replay.

  21. metalhead65 - Apr 28, 2014 at 9:49 AM

    only biased braves fans think he was safe. when they showed the replay on the scoreboard braves fans shut up because they knew he was out. good for price for not taking it. even if they jad to toss him the umps owed him a explanation. all he had to say was what he was told and that would have been the end of it. but they are so sensitive they refused and threw out homer bailey from the dugout for say how can you miss that.

  22. ryno1999 - Apr 28, 2014 at 9:55 AM

    So THAT wasn’t conclusive (so cannot be overturned), yet the overturned a safe call on Brayan Pena at 2nd base a few games ago WAS?!?! This doesn’t seem any less objective and terrible as the ordinary umpires just making the call on the field.

    • marmac2768 - Apr 28, 2014 at 1:34 PM

      People don’t seem to understand that IT IS ALL JUDGMENT!! People thought, the same in the other sports with replay, that IR would make EVERYTHING all right. IT IS STILL JUDGMENT!

  23. shockertalk - Apr 28, 2014 at 12:17 PM

    The guy was out. I mean, how can an ump call this guy safe and then tolerate the “neighborhood rule” at second base on a double play?

    Baseball is tough to umpire with all the bang-bang plays. Many were missed. Too many. That is why replay came in. But, unfortunately, the umpires’ PRIDE did not go out!

    Fearing that replay overturns would occur in almost every game, and not wanting to appear inept at their job, the sovereign umpire organization has given the replay umps (especially since they aren’t present on the field to face the music) the “OK” to refuse overturns on as many calls as they think could be defended as “not 100% conclusive”.

    That way, they could protect the umps image and get away with it.

    The umps are STILL too much a part of the game. They are the SERVANTS, not the MASTERS. MLB needs to have a talk with them.
    5

    • marmac2768 - Apr 28, 2014 at 1:32 PM

      You are full of PRUNES!! If you have watched baseball for a long time, you would see that the umpires make the proper calls 99% of the time. These guys are professionals and they take pride and work hard in their knowledge of the rules and their judgment. They are not there to blow calls, I can tell you that they HATE it when they miss one. But, replay is not the answer. It slows the game down and games are already slow enough.

      An umpire that misses a call is the same as an infielder making a bad throw or a pitcher making a wild pitch, it’s part of the game and the teams have to overcome that like the aforementioned errors. The teams with character will overcome things like that, The teams that whine and gripe about things like this are the losers.

  24. marmac2768 - Apr 28, 2014 at 1:26 PM

    I have been predicting this ever since they came up with replay. Baseball is a much different game than football, hockey or basketball, and replay will not work. I umpired baseball for 27 years, from LL till NCAA to several levels of pro baseball, and it is not easy to see every angle. It might have looked clear that the first baseman touched his wrist, but the replay is in 2D. Another angle might have shown that he missed it by an inch. That’s all it takes. Replay is terrible for baseball, All it does is slow the game down and, particularly for pitchers, rhythm is vitally important.

    It was also, aptly pointed out by the announcers, Price shouldn’t have used his replay challenge that early in the game. It could have cost him the game. I will give him credit that he acted like a gentleman when he came out both times. He knew he was going out that second time, but I don’t blame him for arguing his point.

  25. chad4208 - Apr 28, 2014 at 7:11 PM

    my mom could see he was out and shes legally blind….

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