Alexa, play “Lean On Me”.
The Mets clinched a 3-2 victory in their home opener on Thursday, but, in typical Mets fashion, that came with two dramatic traits and part controversy.
With goals loaded, an out and a draw with Michael Conforto, the Mets outfielder apparently leaned over a pitch in the strike zone, which would have been good for Strike 3 and the No.2. This, the umpires decided that Conforto was hit by a pitch, forcing home the winning point.
While play is reviewable as to whether the ball actually hit him – which he did – Conforto’s intention cannot be reviewed.
But as is the rule, the player must make an effort to get away from the field. Conforto, instead, apparently reached out to make contact with the ball. Game over. Some have speculated that Conforto was fooled by the pitch, which could be the case.
To make things more interesting, home plate umpire Ron Kulpa seemed to want to call Conforto for a strikeout, but he changed his mind.
The arbitrators have the power to confer and quash the appeal, even if Conforto’s intention is not a reviewable decision. The rulebook also states that if a ball hits a batter, but the ground lands in the strike zone, the ground may be considered a strike.
Marlins manager Don Mattingly argued with the referees, with several Marlins also trying to make their case heard – to no avail.
The SNY booth, featuring former Mets Keith Hernandez and Ron Darling, acknowledged that Conforto had leaned into the pitch and given the referees the responsibility of making the call well, which, well, they didn’t. have not.
It’s just one of 162, but it wouldn’t be the Mets Baseball if it wasn’t memorable somehow, right?