May 19, 2010
So Joe Girardi is protesting the Yankees' loss to the Red Sox on Tuesday night on the grounds that Manny Delcarmen(notes) should not have received unlimited warmup pitches after Josh Beckett(notes) left the game with an injury in the fifth.
We're more likely to see old Yankee Stadium magically reassemble itself than Girardi's complaint upheld, but the motion got me wondering about the last time a protest found a sympathetic ear.
I thought it might be George Brett's pine tar game in 1983, but this list of protested games over at Retrosheet says it was actually a Cardinals-Pirates game in 1986 that was called by rain too early.
Charles Feeney, the National League president, today upheld the Pittsburgh Pirates' protest that the rain-abbreviated game they lost, 4-1, to the St. Louis Cardinals Monday night was improperly called by the umpires.
Feeney ordered that the game be resumed Wednedsay night, before the clubs' regularly scheduled game, from the point it was called — with one out in the top of the sixth inning.
The umpire in chief, John Kibler, called the game after rain delays of 17 and 22 minutes. Between the delays, play resumed long enough for two pitches to be thrown.
Feeney said he agreed with the Pirates' contention that Kibler called the game prematurely. National League regulations require that umpires wait at least 75 minutes during an initial weather interruption and 45 minutes during a second one before calling a game.
The game was completed two days later but the Pirates still lost.
I'm not sure how many games have been protested between that game in 1986 and Girardi's objection Tuesday night, but I like the fact that managers make their displeasure known, no matter the long odds. It's like baseball's version of challenging the Soup Nazi.