SALT LAKE CITY — Even fans that have watched baseball their entire lives still see plays that leave them scratching their heads. Such was the case Tuesday at Smith's Ballpark.
In the bottom of the second, New Orleans manager Andy Haines stormed out of his dugout and headed straight for the first-base umpire in protest. An obstruction call against his first baseman had allowed Salt Lake's Tony Campana to move to second base on a single.
Campana struck a ball over New Orleans first baseman Justin Bour, and the speedy outfielder made a turn for second when he ran into Bour. The umpire signaled obstruction and Campana lazily jogged to first, where he was thrown out. However, the umpire originally called him safe.
Haines came out literally kicking and screaming, angrily pointing at the umpire, who tossed Haines. The New Orleans skipper didn't leave the field, however, until he finished off his performance. He slammed his cap to the ground and kicked dirt before exiting to the cheer of the Bees home crowd.
Things then got strange. Though Haines was ejected, he won the argument a few moments later.
The umpire crew got together and discussed the play, and when they broke their huddle, one official pointed to Campana and called him out.
Campana protested to no avail, and the boos echoed through the stadium as fans were subjected to the bizarre umpiring sequence. But according to Bees manager Keith Johnson, the sequence was called correctly.
"The obstruction rule, the play is a continuation play, it's not a dead ball," Johnson said. "The rule on that play as if the obstruction never happened, and it's up to the umpire's judgement. Yeah, he was out. Once he gave up on the play and ran to second base, at that point he was out."
The strange out ended up not having much consequence to the game, however, as the Bees slugged their was to an 11-2 rainy-day victory.
Brennan Boesch, a day removed from being selected as the designated hitter on the All-PCL team, again showed he's one of the best hitters in the league. Boesch went 4 for 5 and drove in a pair of runs as he led a Bees attack that matched its season-high for hits with 18.