JAY COHEN, AP Sports Writer
CHICAGO (AP) — White Sox general manager Rick Hahn said the team changed its process for determining when to challenge a play after a costly mistake in Detroit last weekend.
Chicago lost 2-1 on Friday after it did not challenge a disputed play in the ninth inning in time, and Detroit went on to score the decisive run.
“We made a few changes that night to our processes in terms of how we review things and I think we’re going to be better going forward,” Hahn said before Chicago’s 4-3 victory over Cleveland on Monday night. “It’s unfortunate, but you know, we messed it up and we own it.”
The White Sox and Tigers were tied at 1 when Nick Castellanos led off the ninth with a sinking liner to right that Melky Cabrera couldn’t grab cleanly. Castellanos decided to try for second, and while replays appeared to show shortstop Alexei Ramirez tagged him on a toe, umpire Brian O’Nora ruled called the runner safe.
Ramirez signaled to the dugout, and manager Robin Ventura came out to discuss the play with the umpires. Ventura said O’Nora told him that Ramirez had missed him.
After Ventura returned to the dugout, he got word from the team’s replay staff and then went back on the field. Umpires ruled the time for a challenge had lapsed because the manager had gone back to the dugout and the Tigers had inserted Andrew Romine to run for Castellanos.
Alex Avila sacrificed Romine to third, and Jose Iglesias then delivered a game-ending RBI single.
“There is a chain of events that went wrong starting with the umpire missing the call, which is going to happen on a bang-bang play, to our video guys not getting the look they needed in time, and giving bad information to the bench,” Hahn said. “And then Robin ultimately making the decision that despite the game-changing nature of the call, that all right, we hear from the bench, it’s not worth reviewing, we’re not going to review it.”
Hahn said each team had access to the same replays.
“Our guy naturally pulls up the Chicago feed first and the Chicago feed did not have the angle of him getting the foot,” he said. “So we see the whiff on the knee, the focus was on the knee, not the foot. He confirmed, ‘Yeah, he missed him,’ he did miss the knee. Not until it gets too late and Robin’s back in the dugout does he start messing around with the other feeds. He sees the hit on the foot from the Detroit feed, he calls back and by then, understandably, the ruling was it was too late.”
Asked if he might take more replay risks in the future, especially late in games, Ventura responded: “Yeah. That one, you could sit there and go out and do it but we just missed that one.”
Jay Cohen can be reached at http://www.twitter.com/jcohenap
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