Whitecaps to Replay Protested Game Thursday
BOWLING GREEN, KY – The Midwest League has officially upheld the protest filed by the Bowling Green Hot Rods during Tuesday’s series-opener against the West Michigan Whitecaps at Bowling Green Ballpark.
As a result, the game will be replayed from the point at which the rules were misapplied, resuming in the top of the sixth inning with Bowling Green holding a 5-4 advantage. The contest will resume on Thursday at 6:05 p.m. ET before the previously scheduled series finale. Following a 30-minute break between games, the Whitecaps and Hot Rods will finish out the three-game set with the regularly scheduled nine-inning contest.
The disputed ballgame, which initially resulted in a 6-3 win for West Michigan, was concluded under protest following a controversial ruling on the final play of the bottom of the fifth inning. With the Whitecaps ahead, 4-3, the Hot Rods were batting with the bases loaded and one out. Steve Tinoco drove a ball to right-center that was caught on a dive by Luis Castillo for the second out of the inning. All three baserunners circled the bags and crossed the plate, but West Michigan appealed to first base, claiming that baserunner Kevin Kiermaier had not tagged up appropriately.
The umpires ruled Kiermaier to be out for failing to retouch first base after the catch by Castillo, thereby ending the inning with the third out. Instead of counting the runs scored by the runners that started the play at second and third, however, the umpires ruled that none of the runs would be allowed. West Michigan retained their 4-3 advantage and went on to win, 6-3.
Bowling Green manager Brady Williams filed a formal protest immediately following the umpires’ decision, and on Wednesday the Midwest League formally upheld that protest. When the game is resumed on Thursday, the Hot Rods will be awarded the two runs in question and will be ahead, 5-4.
The individual statistics accumulated following Tuesday’s mistaken ruling will not be counted.
In the meantime, the Whitecaps continue their road trip with what was initially scheduled to be the middle game of the three-game set in Bowling Green at 7:35 p.m. ET on Wednesday night. LHP Antonio Cruz (0-4, 3.93) is scheduled to take the hill for West Michigan against LHP Braulio Lara (1-2, 4.13) of the Hot Rods. The ‘Caps return to Fifth Third Ballpark on Friday, May 20, to start a seven-game homestand with a 6:35 p.m. game against the Fort Wayne TinCaps featuring a Cody Ross bobblehead doll giveaway for the first 1,000 fans. Group and individual tickets can be reserved by calling the Whitecaps front office at 616-784-4131 or visiting whitecapsbaseball.com.