The umpire on the Nationals protest
There are some insights from last last night's crew chief Tim Tschida that I wasn't able to get into today's game story on last night's bizarre and ultimately thrilling Nationals victory. Here's are some notes and quotes from Tschida, as provided by pool reporter Bernie Wilson of the AP:
*The official batting order is the one handed to the umpire in chief. And on that card, Adam Russell, who had been sent to Class AAA Portland earlier in the day, was listed as the starter. It doesn't matter if actual starter Clayton Richard's name was on other lineup cards.
*Tschida said Padres Bud Black actually alerted the umps to his own mistake. "It was actually Bud who brought it to our attention," Tschida said. "He came to the home plate umpire and said, 'Uh, I've got a little problem. Rusell's on the card and Russell's not even here.' "
*Tschida on the interpretation of what happened: "The rules state that the pitcher that's named in the lineup card that's handed to the umpire-in-chief has to face one batter unless he was injured or incapacitated, until that batter is either retired, reaches first base or is injured or something.
"There's no way to fulfill that given the fact that the pitcher named is not even in the area code. We just did what we felt we could do, and that was, Richard is the substitute for Russell. Russell can't play, but he can't play anyway. There isn't much more penalty that we can enforce on them. We can't create somebody to come in and face one guy that Russell should have faced, and the Nationals protested that, which is certainly within their rights, and what they should do."
*Had Russell been on the 25-man roster, he would have had to come in and face one batter, and Richard would be finished for the night. So Russell actually been at the park and on the roster, it would have been a much more penal mistake.
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