Espinosa injured in ninth inning vs. Giants

During the ninth inning of their 3-1 loss to the Giants on Wednesday afternoon, the Nationals found themselves in controversy.

On a 2-2 pitch with two outs, Nationals second baseman Danny Espinosa was hit on the right hand by a Matt Cain pitch. However, home-plate umpire Sam Holbrook and third-base umpire Greg Gibson ruled that Espinosa swung at the pitch to end the game.

The replay showed that Espinosa, who was in serious pain, did not swing at the pitch. Manager Jim Riggleman argued with Holbrook, but the play stood. After the game, Espinosa was seen with a patch on his left hand and declined to talk to the media.

Riggleman said he wanted an explanation on why Espinosa was called out, but Riggleman didn’t get an answer.

“The third-base umpire had it as a swing, the home-plate umpire had it as a swing,” Riggleman said. “What I was asking was, if it hit any part of the bat, then it’s a foul ball. That’s the explanation I was trying to get. I was never really told that the ball hit only him.

“You can’t walk off the field, the game is over and say, ‘OK, the game is over. We lost, you won. We don’t say anything.’ I was just trying to ask the umpires for somewhat of a lengthy explanation. I wasn’t going to argue with them. I just wanted a clear explanation and I didn’t get it.”

6 Comments

Sorry to disagree but he clearly swung the bat and the ball hit off his hand and rolled down the 3rd base line. He is out.

i totally disagree; his bat never crossed or got close to moving over the plate. He should have been given first base.

Oh my.

wow, first Marquis gets screwed with a called swinging strike that hit off his bat last series and now espinosa.

the umps keep making a stronger and stronger case for themselves to be replaced by sentient, self-aware machines from the future. come on time travel! the nats need you!!!

I think you mean the replay showed that he *did* swing the bat. Not really much of a controversy there. Three strikes means you’re out.

Riggleman is right. The umpires owe him an explanation for what happened to Espinosa. My take on this: more arrogance. We’ve seen a lot of this from umpires this season. Joe Torre: please take note. Umpires have responsibilities too.

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