The 42,917 fans on hand at the Rogers Centre Saturday afternoon were part of history.
They saw the longest replay examination of the season — only counting replays when the umpires remained on the field.
It was five minutes and two sections of first base ump Lance Barksdale and plate ump Gary Cederstrom looking into the replay cameras and the big board in centre while talking to the war room in New York on head sets.
The only longer replay delay this season came at Fenway Park when the equipment failed and the umps had to go up the tunnel (the famous tunnel where coaches sometimes rub elbows with the umpires) and that took six minutes and 25 seconds.
Why so long Saturday afternoon?
“I think Doug Eddings was looking at the video in New York,” Jays managerJohn Gibbons told reporters.
Eddings of course is the man in blue whom hitting coach Brook Jacoby was suspended 14 games for getting into an altercation with after the Jays’ 4-1 loss to the Red Sox April 29.
On this third baseman Josh Donaldson fielded a Pablo Sandoval grounder and fired to second baseman Devon Travis, who relayed to first basemanEdwin Encarnacion.
First base ump Barksdale signalled out for a 5-4-3 double play. Red Sox manager John Farrell asked the umps to take another look. They looked and looked.
Eventually Sandoval was adjudged safe at first. Hutchison guessed he must have thrown 15-to-20 pitches to Russell Martin waiting for the decision in New York and then played catch with Donaldson.
“Watching it live it was pretty close, then watching the reply I thought he was going to be an out,” said Hutchison. “The longer those go, usually the call stands.”
Obviously this Fenway Fracas is not going away any time soon bringing back memories of Cito Gaston and Joe Brinkman (Gaston: “someone tell Brinkman Ernie Whitt doesn’t play here any longer.”)
A day after Jacoby released a statement saying he “was wrongly accused of contacting an umpire in the runway following our game,” the umpire’s union countered.
The statement from Brian Lam, of the World Umpires Association, read it was time to move ahead.
Suspended 14 games by disiplinarian Joe Torre for contact with Eddings, Jacoby’s suspension was upheld on appeal by commissioner Rob Manfred on Friday.
Lam’s statement from Washington D.C. read “Emotions often run hot after games, and people sometimes do terrible things that they later deeply regret. However, there is a clear line that must never be crossed. No player or coach should ever physically assault a game official or condone such an attack, regardless of aim or fury. With its decisions, Major League Baseball reinforced that critical message earlier this week and rightly so.
“It is now time to put this matter behind us. Those involved, even those who struggle to accept responsibility for their actions, have committed to ensure that such regrettable incidents do not occur in the future, and we take them at their word. The alternative is madness, and sets a dangerous example for sports officiating at all levels and in all sports. Collectively, we are better than this.”
DH-ng buddies: So who was the best DH in the lineup at the Rogers Centre Saturday afternoon?
Red Sox slugger David Ortiz or Blue Jays bopper Jose Bautista?
“Awww,” said Ortiz, Bautista’s good pal, before doing a TSN new interviewer Spencer Miller, “how is his right shoulder coming along anyway?”
Bautista aggravated a sore shoulder trying to throw out Delmon Young of the Baltimore Orioles at first base April 21 and has not played in the outfield since.
“Of course it’s him,” said Bautista, Ortiz’s good pal, “he’s not going to toot his own horn. What’s he got 200 more homers than me?”
Bautista, who singled in three trips in Saturday’s 7-1 win, has 251 career homers in 12 seasons, two major-league home run titles and once led the American League in RBIs.
Ortiz, who singled in four trips, has 470 homers, a home run title and twice led the AL in RBIs in 19 years
Hutch is Clutch: Pulled during the fifth in all but two of his eight starts this season Drew Hutchison survived a mound visit from the manager and retiredMike Napoli for the third out.
“This year where he’s at, it was huge that he gets over that hump,” manager John Gibbons said, Hutchison said he had the best fastball “I’ve probably had this season,” adding that ”The command was really good. I got in a few deep counts and I could have done a better job of putting guys away earlier and getting deeper into that game.”
Gibbons said Hutchison is better than he’s pitched, but it was unrealistic “to expect him to be completely polished at this stage.”
How are they doing it? Lead-off man Jose Reyes has not played in 15 games. Bautista is hitting .212 with five homers, 17 RBIs and an .829 OPS. And still the Jays lead the American League in runs scored.
“Our lineup’s really deep,” Donaldson told reporters. “We have some guys in the middle of the lineup that can bang a little bit. Up and down there are constantly guys putting good at-bats together. If you do that over the course of nine innings, we feel like we’re going to get to the pitcher eventually.”
Update: Dioner Navarro (hamstring) was making progress rehabbing in Dunedin when he suffered a setback, according to Gibbons … Miguel Castrois starting at triple-A Buffalo, but he remains an option for bullpen help down the road … Reyes (rib) took ground balls during batting practice.
The Jays select: Baseball America has its mock first round for the June 8-10 amateur draft and the Blue Jays pick is … no one. The Jays lost their first-round pick for signing free-agent Russell Martin. The first round consists of only 26 picks. The Jays first selection will be a compensation pick (29th over-all) for losing free-agent Melky Cabrera.
Three Canadians are ranked in the top 100 draft prospects: Ottawa-Nepean Canadians outfielder Demi Orimoloye of Orleans, Ont. is 40th, Mississauga first baseman Josh Naylor of the Ontario Blue Jays is 62nd and Calgary right-hander Mike Soroka of the PBF Redbirds is 88th.
Date, Winning Pitcher
No. 1, 1977 _ Jerry Johnson.
No. 100, 1978 _ Mike Willis.
No. 500, 1984 _ Jimmy Key.
No. 1,000, 1991 _ Frank Wills.
No. 1,500, 1996 _ Pat Hentgen.
No. 2,000, 2002 _ Pete Walker.
No. 2,500, 2008 _ Jesse Carlson.
No. 3,000, 2015 _ Aaron Sanchez.