Showalter ejected after replay overturns call
BALTIMORE -- Orioles manager Buck Showalter was ejected from Sunday's game by second-base umpire Jeff Nelson after arguing on an overturned replay-review call on a transfer play in the seventh inning.
Down a run, O's shortstop Ryan Flaherty made a diving stop and threw the ball to second baseman Jonathan Schoop, who lost the ball trying to remove it from his glove to pivot and throw to first base. The call was initially ruled as out at second base, but Cardinals manager Mike Matheny came on to argue and request a review of the transfer play.
After a two-and-a-half minute review, the call was overturned. Showalter quickly came out onto the field and gestured for the review crew to get on their headset and get in contact with the League's operating headquarters in New York. He was ejected almost immediately.
"Ball's in back of the glove, just like the old rule, new rule, old rule," Showalter said after the Orioles' 8-3 loss. "They changed it out of spring, then they changed it back to the old rule. Today, it got changed back to the other one, so what are you going to do?"
Baltimore came out on the short end of a similar call earlier this season. During an April 20 loss to the Red Sox, Flaherty was charged with an error when he dropped the ball while trying to turn a double play. Boston took advantage of the extra out and tied the game on its way to a win. The interpretation of the rule was changed later that week.
Showalter continued arguing as he went into the clubhouse to a standing ovation, using his hands expressively to get his point across: He wanted the headset to talk to the people in New York himself.
"I understand the frustration when you don't get those. No question," said Matheny, who had previously been 4-15 on challenges. "But we've had a whole lot more go against us than for us, for sure. It was nice timing even though we weren't able to capitalize on it."
Showalter's ejection was his first of the season and the 71st in the Majors this year. With the new replay rules, any time a manager argues a call that has already been determined using replay, he earns an automatic ejection.
"You just want to ascertain whether it's an argument directly related to the replay result or if it was an unrelated question to clarify something such as how many challenges someone would have left or something like that," crew chief Jeff Nelson said.
Showalter was also critical of an inconsistent strike zone that exacerbated the O's struggles on both sides of the plate. There were only four total walks during Sunday's game, but the Orioles struck out looking five times.
Home-plate umpire Gabe Morales is in his first season as a Major League umpire.
"You got a lot of these guys who are callups," Showalter said. "You have to have eight of them in New York. Kind of like expansion in the big leagues, there's a lot of players that wouldn't have been there before.
"They are trying to as good of a job as their experience level and talent level. And there's some really good ones, too. Some of them are young and good, too. … We have a lot of confidence as we go forward those problems will work themselves out. Today wasn't one of them."