Mark Kotsay's frustrations lead to first ejection as Athletics lose to Rangers

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Kotsay's frustrations lead to first ejection in A's loss originally appeared on NBC Sports Bayarea

The only action from the Athletics’ dugout on Saturday came from manager Mark Kotsay.

After seven scoreless innings, tensions rose in the eighth and Kotsay got his first career managerial ejection.

It started when Rangers left fielder Brad Miller hit a key single in the top of the eighth and drove in the first run of the game. Tony Kemp threw out Eli White as he tried to score from second.

But the Rangers challenged the play, claiming A's catcher Sean Murphy blocked the plate from White in violation of the rule.

The umpires initiated a crew chief review, decided Murphy indeed was blocking the plate and overturned the initial call on the field, giving the Rangers a 2-0 lead.

“Obviously my frustrations got the best of me,” Kotsay told reporters after the game. “I understand the Rangers asking for that play to be reviewed. It’s a crew chief discretion. I understand the rule.  I don’t think I’ve seen it overturned very much. Maybe I don’t fully understand the rule. But I didn’t feel [Murphy] was completely blocking the plate, I thought he was set up for a throw from a left fielder, which is going to take him into the plate. Once he received the ball, he was ahead of the runner.

“For me, it’s a big momentum turn in the game. Even though they had scored, adding on a second run, and then continuing the inning. They had every right to throw me out the first time I went out there [because] you’re not really supposed to argue replay. I think I just went out to get the change and I kind of lost my frustration with replay. It was a big moment in the game.”

Kotsay expressed his frustrations in between innings and was eventually ejected before the bottom of the eighth.

“[I] tried to set up where I usually try to set up and then there’s a lot of things converging at one time,” Murphy said. “I was just trying to make a play on the ball and make the tag. I don’t think it was egregious. Obviously, New York thought I violated the rule. Just one of those things when you’re trying to make a play on the ball.”

While the A’s couldn’t get things going offensively, Frankie Montas pitched a masterpiece on the mound. He permitted three hits, struck out eight and walked one on 86 pitches.

And an impressive defensive play from Nick Allen woke up the crowd at the Coliseum. The rookie ran 115 feet at a sprint speed of 27.8 feet per second and somehow managed to make the spectacular catch over his head.

“Yeah, I think the Raiders might be calling,” Kotsay joked after the game. “Literally a hail mary. He just took off sprinting. It was a great play.”

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The A’s dropped to 8-8 on the season and will look to avoid a sweep as they host the Rangers on Sunday for the final game of the series.