In the fourth inning of Friday night's series opener against the Boston Red Sox, Cleveland Indians outfielder Rajai Davis did something weird. Or, more accurately, first base umpire Jim Joyce did something weird.
A pitch inside from Red Sox starter Clay Buchholz hit Davis in the hand while he was trying to check his swing. He was at first, correctly, given a free base. But when home plate umpire Chad Fairchild deferred to Joyce at first, things got weird. A lengthy debate ensued, and apparently, Davis struck out for some reason.
Twitter wasn't happy (Fair warning, this gif is VERY flashy).
Jim Joyce? HORSESHIT.— Monte the Color Man (@Monte_Colorman) May 21, 2016
That's a checked swing. pic.twitter.com/2s3lsTJMqm
Even the official Indians Twitter was mystified and maybe a little annoyed.
.@MLB what on earth is happening— #VoteTribe (@Indians) May 21, 2016
No. We can't. https://t.co/5TuVxgli1G— #VoteTribe (@Indians) May 21, 2016
The official ruling, from what I can tell, is that Joyce said Davis swung, which would mean he was out. As Rick Manning pointed out in the Indians broadcast, if you get hit in the leg but swing on strike three, that's a strikeout. However, Davis clearly did not go all the way around, and he was hit by a pitch. He should have walked.