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David Ortiz whined about an official scorer’s ruling yesterday

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During yesterday’s Red Sox-Twins game, David Ortiz hit a ball sharply which went to the right of Joe Mauer down at first. The ball bounced off Mauer’s glove and rolled a few feet away. Often times — maybe most of the time — hot shots like that are called hits. Sometimes they’re called errors. Here the official scorer called it an error.

Gordon Edes of ESPNBoston.com reports that, after the inning was over, Ortiz “could be seen yelling at the press box, making a thumbs-down motion several times to indicate his displeasure with the call.” After the game, Ortiz had this to say:

“I thought people were supposed to have your back at home, and it never happens,” he said. “It’s always like that. I’ve been here for more than a decade and the scorekeepers here are always horrible. This is home, man. I always look like the bad guy, but they always end up changing it.”

They end up changing it, David, because you issue formal protests when a lot of guys of your stature would let it go. But let’s leave that aside for a moment.

Let’s instead focus of the pettiness of a guy with a Hall of Fame resume throwing a little temper tantrum over a scoring call that will matter not one iota in the course of this season let alone his career. In a game in which he came through in the clutch with a tenth inning home run which tied the game. Even if you allow for spontaneous frustration at the time of the scoring decision, you’d think that’d wash away after a game in which he played a key part in a heroic victory.

But nope. Instead he’s whining about a judgment call. Specifically, he’s whining that he didn’t get some hometown advantage on a judgment call. That’s about the weakest sauce.

Edes, in his story, notes that Ortiz is not the first guy to get mad about official scorers calls like this. Lots of guys do. Edes gives a long example of Giants first baseman Will Clark doing so back in the day. Which, yes, does show that even superstars get upset like this sometimes.

But it’s also worth noting that Clark, by the accounts of most people who played with him and covered him, was kind of a jackass.

Wade Davis? Greg Holland? Who needs ’em?

KANSAS CITY, MO - AUGUST 21: Joakim Soria #48 of the Kansas City Royals throws in the eighth inning against the Minnesota Twins at Kauffman Stadium on August 21, 2016 in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo by Ed Zurga/Getty Images)
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The story of the two-time defending AL champion and current defending World Series champ Kansas City Royals cannot be told without talking at length about their bullpen.

In 2014, Wade Davis, Greg Holland and Kelvin Herrera formed a shutdown brigade that not only made it next to impossible for the opposition to mount late rallies, but managed something which seemed utterly impossible before 2014: they turned Ned Yost into a tactical genius. Indeed, the only time Yost got criticism at all that fall was when he messed with the autopilot formula that had that three-headed monster handling the 7th, 8th and 9th innings.

Much the same happened in 2015, of course, despite Holland’s sharp decline and eventual injury. Davis and Herrera continued their dominance. They were joined by Ryan Madson and a cast of other effective relievers who, along with timely hitting, great defense and good health, helped propel the Royals to the title.

This year had not been quite the same story. Holland has been out all year and Davis, while effective when he’s pitched, has missed time due to injury. As has longtime contributor and presumptive next-man-up Luke Hochevar. Herrera is basically still Herrera, but Ned Yost has been presented with a decidedly different set of choices. Lots of choices and Ned Yost don’t always go together well, but lately that hasn’t mattered.

Last night the Royals’ bullpen came in to a close game and tossed three scoreless innings. That set a franchise record with 32 straight scoreless frames, besting the previous record set back in the club’s inaugural season in 1969. The streak is a huge part of why the Royals have won nine games in a row.

Unlike the success of 2014-15, the streak is not a three-man show. As Rustin Dodd of the Kansas City Star notes, eight different relievers have appeared for Kansas City during the streak, with Joakim Soria and Matt Strahm leading the crew with five and a third innings pitched. Herrera has tossed five scoreless. Otherwise it’s been a group effort with even Peter Moylan offering a couple of scoreless frames. And here you thought Moylan was, I dunno, gearing up for the upcoming Brisbane Bandits season. Nope.

The Royals are still not, in my view anyway, a lock to make the postseason. It’s a a crowded field right now. They’re seven and a half back in the AL Central and four back in the Wild Card with a bunch of teams in front of them. But they’re certainly playing themselves back into the conversation. They’re interesting. And they’re doing it in much the same way they’ve done it the past two years. Only with different dudes doing the do.

Video: Mookie Betts made a ridiculous throw last night

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Mookie Betts was an infielder once upon a time and the knock on him both then and since his move to the outfield was that maybe his arm was not fantastic. As an infielder there was talk that he was better suited to the right side than the left. As an outfielder people were saying that, with work, his arm could be average and/or serviceable. Not bad, of course, but not anything to write home about.

Maybe we need to reassess that, because last night he uncorked one from right field that would make Dwight Evans says “dang, man.”

 

And the throw mattered, as Kiermaier represented the tying run in a game that, at the time, the Sox were leading 2-1.

Betts is a dangerous middle-of-the-order bat at age 23. And now he shows that he’ll nail a fast runner with a frozen rope if he has to. The guy is going to win an MVP award some day. And maybe not just one.