The Kia Tigers suffered their second managerial ejection in about a month after a video review ruled against the offense.
Kia head coach Kim Jong-kook was ejected from the game against the Samsung Lions in the third inning of the 2023 Shinhan Bank SOL KBO League at Kia Champions Field in Gwangju on Wednesday after appealing a video review. It was Kim’s second ejection of the season. The team ended the first half with a 1-4 loss, snapping a six-game winning streak.
In the third inning, Samsung batter Jose Pirela hit a grounder to first base and ran inside the foul line. KIA pitcher Yang Hyun-jong caught the ball and threw to first base, but the throw went wide to the right of the first baseman, allowing pinch runner Kim Sung-yoon to advance to third.
KIA immediately requested a video review of Pirela’s three-pitch violation. After the video review, the umpires upheld the fair play call. The umpires explained, “Although the runner ran into fair territory, the pitcher Song Gumi-s was judged to be the pitcher.” Kim immediately jumped up and made a strong appeal, but it was unsuccessful and he was automatically ejected after the video review.
A three-foot rule violation is defined in the KBO Baseball Rules when a runner, while playing defense at first base, runs the second half of the line between home plate and first base and crosses the three-foot line inside or outside the foul line, and the umpire determines that the runner interfered with the fielder receiving a ball thrown to first base or handling a batted ball.
KIA was called for a three-foot violation on a reverse attack against Gwangju NC on March 16. Kia was trailing 9-10 in the fifth inning when Shin Bum-soo bunted with runners on first and second base. The NC pitcher threw the ball to first base, but it hit Shin’s foot as he was running to first base and bounced, allowing the runner to score and tie the game at 10-10.
NC requested a video review and the call was overturned. The first baseman did not receive the pitcher’s throw as Shin violated the three-foot line. The run was canceled and the runners returned to their positions. Kim protested the situation to the umpire and received his first ejection of the season.
The three-pitch rule was tightened in 2019 to “automatic out for violation” and then changed back to umpire discretion in 2020. This year, umpires traveling to spring training sites informed the 10 teams that they would not be “mechanically looking” at the rule.
In the end, the difference between the rookie and Pirela’s three-foot rule seemed to be where the pitcher’s throw went. The NC pitcher’s throw was aimed squarely at first base, and Shin was interfering with the defense. On the other hand, Pirela also ran inside the foul line, but Yang’s throw was already out of play regardless of the batter’s situation. 메이저놀이터
Coach Kim explained that the batter ran inside the foul line and Yang Hyun-jong threw to first base to avoid the batter, but the umpires didn’t accept the appeal.
The call was overturned after going to the video review center, but the ambiguous application of the “umpire discretion” rule did not convince everyone. The explanation that it was not a violation of the three-foot rule because of Song Gumis was also unprecedented. Kim didn’t understand and stormed out of the dugout.