Several calls, hard slide irk Reds manager during rubber game
By Mark Sheldon
CINCINNATI -- You know what really grinded Reds manager Bryan Price's gears following his club's 7-5 loss to the Cardinals in 11 innings on Sunday? Plenty.
Price already had the disappointment of losing a game and series that were winnable. But he was also irritated about being ejected by crew chief Joe West, seeing a St. Louis replay challenge go against the Reds and watching a late slide into one of his players.
"There's a lot of things about this series that were upsetting, and not necessarily the fact that we didn't win more than one," Price said.
After Jhonny Peralta's two-run homer off Cincinnati reliever Jumbo Diaz tied the game at 5 in the eighth, Mark Reynolds drew a walk. Jon Jay then took first base on a pitch in the dirt that appeared to hit him in the foot. Price disagreed with home-plate umpire Kerwin Danley. As the discussion lengthened, West came over from third base. West and Price had a heated exchange, and the umpire tossed the manager out of the game.
"It was just that no one made any signal that the ball had hit him, they reacted -- everyone, including the umpires -- reacted as if the ball was in play," Price said. "My only question was, as opposed to using the replay, nobody called it, why are they awarding Jay first base?"
Price did not want to use a replay challenge to get the call overturned. He already lost a challenge in Saturday's defeat to St. Louis.
"It was inconclusive on our video, but I wanted somebody to own the call," Price said. "You have to call it. Now I have to use a challenge? [The Cardinals] should have to use a challenge."
It was the third ejection of Price's career as manager.
"[Danley] asked him three times, 'Do you want to challenge?' He says 'No, I don't want to challenge,'" West said. "So he got mad, evidently didn't like the way we called time or something. For the official report, he was ejected for delaying the game."
Later in the inning, Yadier Molina attempted a sacrifice bunt and appeared to hit into a 2-5-3 double play. Cardinals manager Mike Matheny successfully challenged that Molina was tagged by Reds catcher Devin Mesoraco, which meant the force play was off and that Todd Frazier needed to tag the runner at third base, pinch-runner Peter Bourjos.
Frazier didn't make the tag, of course, because no one ruled Molina out on the play.
"[That's] the ambiguity of trying to get everything right all the time," Price said. "The replay clouds it. You know, you can almost deal with a missed call by an umpire [better] than the ambiguity of instant replay."
In the fifth inning, Jason Heyward hit a double to right field and tried to stretch for a triple, but he was thrown out on a relay throw by Brandon Phillips to Frazier. Price wasn't crazy about Heyward's slide.
"I thought that was a bad slide in there. I thought that was a dirty slide, and I didn't like that at all," Price said. "It could have really affected Frazier, and I'm not happy about that, nor are any of our players. Hopefully, we'll be able to use it as fuel in this series to find ways to win games like today."
Mark Sheldon is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Mark My Word, and follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.