Astros and Royals called back onto field after bizarre reversed call by umpires

The Associated Press ~ staff The News
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KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Houston Astros and Kansas City Royals were sent back onto the field after a bizarre reversed call by the umpires Thursday night.

The play happened with one out in the fifth inning, when Kansas City’s Yuniesky Betancourt hit a soft liner to shortstop with a runner on second. Second base umpire Mike Everitt initially ruled Geoff Blum caught the ball on a fly, then stepped on second to double up Mike Aviles for the final out.

After meeting near the mound, the umpires ruled the ball hit the ground before Blum fielded it, and they called both teams back out to the field. Aviles was placed at third base and Betancourt was ruled out — even though Blum never threw to first.

Crew chief Tim McClelland told the Royals the decision was to correct the missed call on the field and that it was assumed Blum would have thrown out Betancourt at first. Blum was awarded an assist and first baseman Lance Berkman was given a putout despite never touching the ball.

The Elias Sports Bureau ruled Berkman should get the putout because he was closest to Betancourt at the time of the play, similar to the type of ruling made on interference calls.

Scott Podsednik lined out on the next pitch to end the inning.

Organizations: Kansas City Royals, Houston Astros, Elias Sports Bureau

Geographic location: KANSAS CITY

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