It took less than an inning for a horrible umpiring decision in what stands to be the final World Series before expanded instant replay is introduced. Enter Dana DeMuth (GIF from @BuzzfeedSports)
DeMuth, the second base ump, said Cardinals shortstop Pete Kozma lost the ball on the exchange, giving the Cardinals an out on a potential double play ball from David Ortiz. Red Sox manager John Farrell came out and convinced DeMuth to huddle with the rest of the umpires, and the call was overturned. The FOX crew reported afterwards that the crew was unanimous in believing it should be changed, suggesting that even DeMuth realized he made a mistake. Not that he would have changed his mind on his own.
So, congrats to John Hirschbeck’s crew for not making a potentially series-altering mistake all of 20 minutes in. The Red Sox went on to score three runs on a Mike Napoli double.
Free agent outfielder Peter Bourjos is heading back to the Angels on a minor league deal, per a report from Steve Adams of MLB Trade Rumors. The agreement includes an invitation to spring training, but has not yet been officially confirmed by the team.
Bourjos, 31, played out a one-year gig with the Braves in 2018 and slashed .205/.239/.364 with four extra-base hits and a .603 OPS through a career-low 47 plate appearances. He showed more promise during a short-lived stint with the Giants’ Triple-A squad in the second half of the season, but elected free agency in early November and had yet to catch on with another major league club. His deal with the Angels represents a homecoming of sorts, as he played some of the best years of his career in Anaheim from 2010 to 2013 before getting traded to the Cardinals in a multiplayer swap for David Freese and Fernando Salas in 2014.
The veteran outfielder is long past his prime, but could still bring some value to the team as outfield depth behind Justin Upton, Mike Trout, and Kole Calhoun. Per Adams, he’s expected to compete for a spot as the Angels’ fourth outfielder, though he also has limited experience at DH as well.