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Bizarre play helps send Indians to 9-2 loss

Published on NewsOK Modified: August 5, 2014 at 10:59 pm •  Published: August 5, 2014
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CLEVELAND (AP) — David Murphy followed the bouncing ball, only to be tagged out by another one on the field.

The bizarre sequence summed up a Tuesday night when nothing went right for the Cleveland Indians in a 9-2 loss to Cincinnati.

Murphy was thrown out at third base on a fluke play in the seventh inning. During Yan Gomes' double to right, a warmup pitch by Jumbo Diaz flew onto the field from Cincinnati's bullpen, which Murphy believed to be the live ball that landed just behind second base.

Ramon Santiago at third took a relay throw from Zack Cozart and tagged Murphy out when he rounded the bag — despite the stop sign being thrown up by Indians third base coach Mike Sarbaugh.

"A player is told two things in that situation, to trust your base coach and to find the ball," said Murphy. "Sarby is saying, 'Right here, right here,' but I see a ball sitting there and I'm thinking I can make it. I'm not kicking myself because what can I do? I guess you could say I'm a bad listener because I didn't listen to Sarby."

Though Reds right-hander Johnny Cueto (12-6) was dominant in throwing a complete game, Cleveland only trailed 6-2 at the time and would have had two runners on with none out. Manager Terry Francona ran onto the field to discuss the call with crew chief Gerry Davis, but knew the rules were not in his favor.

"Gerry's explanation was right on, but that didn't make it any easier to hear," Francona said. "He said he understood our frustration, but they can't kill a play until the conclusion. It's unfortunate and kind of fluky, but that's how it goes."

Francona laughed when he was asked if he thought Diaz intentionally affected the play, saying, "That looked like a pretty decent throw. If they're that good, they're really good and they deserve it."

Murphy was playing right field, forcing him to stand in front of Cincinnati's relievers for the final two innings. He found little humor in the situation.

"When I went back out there, I told the guys in their bullpen, 'Good job,' but we didn't have a chance to have a conversation about it," Murphy said. "Fortunately, the game ended up being lopsided. But seeing what happened, a team could think about doing that, so maybe there needs to be a rule instituted about it."

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