New York Yankees manager Joe Girardi was asked several times Friday night about his decision not to challenge the call that Indians pinch hitter Lonnie Chisenhall was hit by a pitch in the sixth inning -- despite the fact replays appeared to indicate the ball struck the barrel of his bat before deflecting into catcher Gary Sanchez's glove.
Had the call been overturned, it would have been an inning-ending strikeout. Instead, Chisenhall was awarded first base, and Francisco Lindor followed with a grand slam that cut the Yankees' lead to 8-7 and shifted the momentum in Cleveland's favor.
Here is a portion of the transcript from Girardi's postgame news conference following the Yankees' 9-8, 13-inning loss in Game 2 of the American League Division Series.
Joe, with Chisenhall, what happened on not challenging the hit-by ...
There was nothing that told us that he was not hit on the pitch. By the time we got the super-slow-mo, we are beyond a minute. It was way too late. They tell us we have the 30 seconds. They will take longer in replay.
And probably being a catcher, my thought is I never want to break a pitcher's rhythm. That's how I think about it. So if it's not something ... there was nothing that said he was not hit.
Could you have waited and asked for more time?
They said 30 seconds. We talk about that in the meeting all the time.
Joe, it seemed, though, that Sanchez was trying to say that he was hit? Being that it's already the sixth inning, why not just go ahead and do it?
I guess I could have, Joel. Again, being the catcher I am, I think about rhythm for the pitcher and not taking him out of his rhythm.
Joe, sorry, I heard you say 30 seconds as we were coming in. You said you didn't have an answer in time on the challenge?
No, we did not have the replay that showed he was not hit.
OK. So you couldn't challenge ...
I guess I ... in hindsight, yes, I could, but as I said earlier, being a catcher, I think about rhythm and never want to take a pitcher out of rhythm and have them stand over there two minutes to tell me that he wasn't hit.
Joe, if I'm not mistaken, that happened earlier this year when you didn't have the replay in time.
Why does that happen and is there anything that can be done to fix it?
I don't know. I'm not sure why it happens. You're at the mercy of the telecast, what replays you get.
Joe, I assume at some point it was relayed to you that he was actually hit, the knob of the bat. When were you alerted that was the case? I'm sure I know what the reaction is, but can you take us through your emotions at that point, especially if what happened afterwards.
It’s probably about ... it's when Lindor is coming up to bat, in a sense, that we're alerted, and it's frustrating, you know, because if he calls that he's not hit, then nothing ever happens. And maybe they replay it. I don't know. But he made no signal that he was hit. The umpire thought he was hit. I know Gary said it. We looked at it. We had no super-slow-mo at that time. Again, I'm going to reiterate, I think about keeping a pitcher in rhythm. Maybe I'll think different now.
Joe, just to be clear, did you go ahead and say to the umps, we're not challenging, or did they say you're out of time?
No, I told them after the 30 seconds we weren't challenging.
Is that something that needs to change? If they're going to give you all kinds of different replays, do they need to be given to you within the 30 seconds?
Yeah, you hope that the super-slow-mo, you get it within the 30 seconds, but sometimes you don't get it for like a minute. It's something, I guess we can talk about moving forward.