The Boston Red Sox and Houston Astros played a wild game on Thursday night at Fenway Park, but the weirdest thing that happened was somehow a double play.
What in theory could have been a showdown between pitchers Houston’s Zack Greinke and Boston’s Eduardo Rodriguez became a bullpen-filled hitters duel, with six lead changes and the Red Sox pulling away to win, 12-8. It also included one of the weirdest defensive plays of the season, with Houston blowing a chance to make it a seventh lead change in the seventh inning when it squandered a man on first with a very odd infield grounder.
With Yuli Gurriel at the plate, he swung at a 1-2 pitch that bounced right in front of his feet near the batter’s box. The broadcaster on the call initially thought Gurriel fouled the pitch off his foot, but it actually bounced on the dirt in fair territory and got extremely close to his body but stayed in fair territory.
No one seemed to know the play was live except the umpire and Red Sox catcher Christian Vazquez, who threw the ball to first for the out and then started orchestrating throws around the infield. The Astros seemed bewildered play wasn’t ruled dead, as the runner on first seems to float into the ether for a bit and eventually finds his way somewhere near second base before he was tagged out to end the inning.
Baker came out to argue the play, and it turns out for good reason. He was ejected, and without him in the dugout the Astros failed to come back. But despite his protestations and how it may have looked from his perspective, it all played out the way it should have: as a very unlikely infield hit.