8/16/2014 12:30 A.M. ET
Jones ruled to have offered at hit-by-pitch
Long review unnecessary after initial call made by first-base umpire
By Brittany Ghiroli / MLB.com
CLEVELAND -- Should Adam Jones have gotten first base in the eighth inning of the Indians' 2-1, 11-inning win?
The Orioles thought so.
Down a run, Jones squared up to bunt on Indians starter Corey Kluber's first pitch, began to offer and pulled back, with replays showing that the ball hit Jones' fingers on his right hand. The O's center fielder signaled to home-plate umpire Dana DeMuth that he had been hit, with manager Buck Showalter and head athletic trainer Richie Bancells also coming out to check on Jones.
After conferring for several minutes, Showalter challenged the call and argued that Jones had been hit by the pitch. Though the play was reviewable from that standpoint, first-base umpire Ron Kulpa had already deemed that Jones had offered at the pitch in question.
"And you can't review check swings, so to speak," said Showalter, who added that he wished the play had been explained as such to save everyone some time. "Why [that is], and you can't review hit-by-pitch, I'm not [sure] ... but he was bleeding pretty good. He's got a cut across here. Of course he's got a glove on, you don't know what a guy's got underneath. Of course, if you look at it, I'm not real sure he offered at it, either."
The eighth-inning delay led to their only run of the game, but the confusing play could have perhaps been seen as a tactical move from the Indians' dugout.
"[Was Showalter trying to] freeze the kicker?" Indians manager Terry Francona said. "You'd have to ask him. I don't know. Regardless of what is being said, because I'm not privy to that because I'm not out there, I don't think [the umpires] can allow that to happen."
Kluber, who got Jones to ground out but exited after giving up a single to Nelson Cruz, felt the delay disrupted some of the game's tempo.
"I'm not sure exactly what he was asking about or arguing. It was pretty lengthy," Kluber said. "I don't think that's why we have the replay system, is for him to go out there and try to interrupt the flow of the game. In the end, it didn't really affect me. We were able to get through Jones. I guess that's all I have to say about it."
Jones, who pounded his chest and appeared to yell something aimed at Kulpa after his groundout, said he would plead the fifth when asked about the play.
"All part of the game," Jones said. "So like I said, I'd rather take the high road tonight."
Brittany Ghiroli is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Britt's Bird Watch, and follow her on Facebook and Twitter @britt_ghiroli. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.