The Tampa Bay Rays made a controversial, series-compromising move to pull ace Blake Snell off the mound amid a dominant pitching performance during Game 6 of the World Series.
Their opponents, the Los Angeles Dodgers, celebrated the move as it happened.
Dodgers star outfielder Mookie Betts said he breathed "a sigh of relief" upon the pitcher's exit, and Los Angeles manager Dave Roberts said the team was "just excited that Snell was out of the game."
A majority of those watching Game 6 of the 2020 World Series questioned the Tampa Bay Rays' decision to cut Blake Snell's dominant pitching performance short in the sixth inning.
But the Los Angeles Dodgers surely didn't.
"I'm not going to ask any questions," Los Angeles superstar Mookie Betts said after the game. "But he was pitching a great game."
As it turns out, the Dodgers — who were trailing the Rays 1-0 upon Snell's departure — were simply grateful for Tampa Bay manager Kevin Cash's controversial move.
"It was kind of like a sigh of relief," Betts said, per the AP. "Had he stayed in the game, he might have pitched a complete game. It was the Cy Young Snell that pitched tonight."
Los Angeles manager Dave Roberts echoed similar sentiments and added that he and his star outfielder — who the team acquired from the Boston Red Sox before the start of the season — shared a moment of mutual satisfaction as the Rays' ace left the mound.
"Mookie looked at me with a little smile," Roberts said. "We were all just excited that Snell was out of the game."
"Our hitters got a real jolt from that," said Los Angeles President of Baseball Operations Andrew Friedman added.
The Dodgers immediately feasted on Snell's replacement — Nick Anderson. Betts doubled to left, moving a man to third and positioning him to score on a wild pitch to tie the game. Just two pitches after that, Betts scored on Corey Seager's ground ball to first, giving Los Angeles a 2-1 lead.
The Dodgers would go on to win the game 3-1 and clinch their first championship since 1988.
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