The Baltimore Orioles took a 2-0 lead over the Detroit Tigers in Game 2 of their ALDS on Friday when Nick Markakis' two-run homer stood up after an umpire review. Markakis' shot came with two outs in the third inning off Justin Verlander.
The ball bounced off the top of the bullpen dugout's roof in right field. It's a bit of an awkward alignment as the roof juts out from the back of the fence in front of the stands, but if a ball hits the roof it's apparently considered a home run by Camden Yards ground rules.
Verlander had retired the first eight batters before Jonathan Schoop singled on an 0-2 fastball with two outs. The rookie second baseman is still undisciplined at the plate -- 122 strikeouts and just 13 walks this season -- so throwing him such a hittable pitch with two strikes was questionable. Schoop hit just .153 against curveballs, so 0-2 seemed to be a good count to throw him a curveball off the plate, or another slider like the 0-1 slider that Schoop swung at and missed.
Against, Markakis, Verlander threw seven straight fastballs, with Markakis fouling off three before connecting on a 3-2, 94 mph heater that was up and middle-in.
Verlander's fastball isn't what it once was, of course, and batters slugged .456 against it this year, a number that had Verlander ranked 98th out of 147 pitchers with at least 100 innings.
The offense quickly picked up Verlander, however, scoring five runs in the top of the fourth off Wei-Yin Chen, as Miguel Cabrera doubled off the center-field wall, J.D. Martinez belted a three-run home run and Nick Castellanos followed with a solo shot.