If you’re not a big fan of replay you wanted no part of the first inning in yesterday’s Rangers-Nationals game. That’s when Ron Washington and Matt Williams came out to challenge two different calls on the same play.
With two outs and runners on the corners, the Rangers’ Alex Rios broke to steal second base. He was initially called safe, but then appeared to come off the bag and was tagged. Meanwhile, the runner on third — Elvis Andrus — came home and, initially anyway, was ruled to have crossed home plate before Rios was tagged out at second. So it’s 1-0 Rangers, yes? Well, no.
Matt Williams came out and asked for a replay as to whether or not Andrus crossed home before or after Rios was tagged. Ron Washington came out and asked for a replay as to whether Rios was actually out at second. It was the first time since the replay system started this season that two calls on the same play were challenged.
Williams won his, Washington lost his. Rios was out and Andrus was late. They went into the bottom of the first still tied 0-0. It ended up not mattering, of course, as the Nats couldn’t do anything off Yu Darvish and the Rangers won 2-0.
You can watch the thrilling, scintillating excitement of a double replay challenge here.
It’s extension season and Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports that the Astros — who already agreed to an extension with Alex Bregman — are discussing contract extensions with Justin Verlander and Gerrit Cole.
Funny thing about Verlander, by the way: when he got his current $180 million deal, most people fell into the “oh, there’s an overpay!” column. What’s more, this past winter, when everyone was talking about how bad it is to give guys big long term deals, Verlander’s name was notably absent in the conversation despite the fact that his deal has turned out to be quite good. I suppose that says something about how good the anti-long-term deal folks are at cherrypicking.
That being said, Rosenthal says “it would be an upset” if either Verlander or Cole signed extensions. I can see that. Verlander is locked up this year and has a vesting option for 2020, and a lot can happen in a year or two. Cole is a Scott Boras client and Boras clients tend to hit the market rather than sign extensions. Perhaps their former teammate, Dallas Keuchel‘s, terrible experience on the free agent market this winter will alter that calculus. Hard to say.