Controversial Call Gives Braves 4-3 Win In 19th Inning

ATLANTA (KDKA/AP) – The Atlanta Braves have long been a sore topic of discussion for fans of the Pittsburgh Pirates.

However, the end to Tuesday’s 4-3 loss in 19 innings has only added fuel to the fire.

Julio Lugo walked with one out in the bottom of the 19th inning to get things going for the Braves. Jordan Schafer followed with a single that advanced Lugo to third base.

Scott Proctor stepped up to the plate and chopped a grounder to third baseman Pedro Alvarez, who came home with the throw.

The throw beat Lugo to the plate by several feet and Michael McKenry appeared to tag him prior to crossing the plate.

Home plate umpire Jerry Meals disagreed and deemed McKenry missed the tag and called Lugo safe to end the game.

“I saw the tag, but he looked like he oléd him, and I called him safe for that. I looked at the replays and it appeared he might have got him on the shin area. I’m guessing he might have got him, but when I was out there when it happened, I didn’t see a tag. I just saw the glove sweep up. I didn’t see the glove hit his leg,” Meals said.

Clint Hurdle came out to argue the call to no avail. The loss dropped the Pirates back to third in the NL Central after the Milwaukee Brewers and St. Louis Cardinals both won Tuesday.

Jeff Karstens (8-5, 2.41 ERA) started the game for the Pirates and allowed three runs on six hits, while walking three and striking out three in five innings.

Daniel McCutchen (3-2, 2.21 ERA) was charged with the loss after allowing the controversial run in the 19th inning. He scattered three hits over 5 1-3 innings, while walking four and striking out three.

For Atlanta, Tommy Hanson (11-5, 3.13 ERA) allowed three runs on seven hits, while walking two and striking out six in six innings of work.

Proctor(2-3, 6.48 ERA) got the win and only allowed one hit in three innings of relief.

The Pirates jumped out to an early lead, but the Braves were able to pull even in the third inning.

Neil Walker’s RBI triple in the first inning opened the scoring for the Pirates. Two batters later, Alvarez brought Walker home with an RBI single to right field.

McKenry extended the lead to 3-0 in the second inning with a solo home run to left field.

Dan Uggla’s two-RBI single in the bottom of the third cut the lead to 3-2. Jason Heyward would tie the game two batters later with a bases loaded single to center field.

The Pirates threatened in the 17th and 18th innings, but stranded runners on second and third on both occasions.

The game, which ended at 1:50 a.m., was the longest in Turner
Field history and matched the longest in the major leagues this
season. At 6 hours, 39 minutes, it was the longest by time for both

The teams will be back in action Wednesday night at 7:10 p.m.

Paul Maholm (6-10, 3.26 ERA) is scheduled to take on Jair Jurrjens (12-3, 2.44 ERA).


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  • ntb

    The home plate umpire just found a way to end the game and that was all he was interested in.

  • bruce USA

    Jerry Meals (home plate Ump.) made controversial calls all night long. The MLB needs to weed this Ump out of the roster. Having idiots like him behind the plate makes the whole game questionable!!!

  • Ump

    Yinz don’t know how hard it is to ump. Did you ever try it? NO! Don’t critisize unless you walk in my boots.

    • LUGZ

      You umpire in BOOTS??????

      • STUSH

        What size are those boots?

      • LUGZ


  • Pungy

    Bud Selig….Do your JOB……….

  • Anonymous

    This UMP should get life or be suppened for the rest of the year.

    • Umpidy Dog

      you should be SUSPENDED for not knowing how to spell!

  • Blown Call

    What McKenry should have said afterward:
    “The next time a play like this happens, I’m going to drill the guy in the head so hard his helmet will pop off. That way the umpire won’t be confused on whether a tag was made or not”.

    • Anonymous

      After years in girls travel softball McKenry is so right the more dramatic, contact or not, will get you the call.

  • Nick Manning

    Bucs had chance in 12th inning to take lead, why the hell Hurdle called a squeeze play with 1 out is beyond me esp after braves had meeting at mound. Bottom line Pirates need another bat in lineup. Overbay sucks balls waste of 5 million dollars

  • Anonymous

    Stevie Wonder could have made a better call!! Lugo knew he was out. Because he did make sure he touched the plate after the call.

  • Donna

    The ump was lazy all night and this call just proved he wanted to go home!

  • Zach

    Seriously, MLB needs to add replay for all events that happen in a game. Last season a blown perfect game this year this terrible call. MLB might have the worst commissioner in all the major sports he is too afraid to improve the game and wants to live in the past

  • steve b

    i could care less about the call can’t stand the pirates or baseball in general

    • Anonymous

      then why are you commenting

  • Beer Goggle Laser Surgery

    How McKenry or Hurdle kept himself from taking a swing at the umpire is shocking. The ump clearly had enough and just wanted to go home. The ump should be banned for life.

  • Mark

    Under the rules protest is not allowed as it is a “judgement call”. So how are protests over offical scorer calls allowed, aren’t they “judgement calls’ also??

  • Ryan S.

    I guess now we’ll have to hear all of the same whiners that cried about the officiating in the NFL being against the Steelers now say that MLB is against the Pirates. These things happen and things usually have a way of evening out, so stop whining!

  • BIg Don

    The Buccos and the City should be embarrassed about going 2 for 15 with runners in scoring position or whatever the stat was during the game. HIT THE BALL AND SCORE RUNS and you don’t need to worry about 19 innings or “blown” calls. NEVER BLAME IT ON UMPS YOU CHUMPS.

    • Sid Bream

      Exactly!!! Winners find ways to win, Losers make excuses for not winning. Hit the dam ball already and score some runs and the Pirates wouldn’t be in the position where an ump decides the game. The Pirates are the worst hitting team still in contention. They are lucky their pitchers have over-achieved. When the pitching reverts back to previous year’s levels next year, the Bucs will end up 20 games under .500 and out of the race by Memorial Day. They have lucked out this year in a very, very weak division.

  • marilyn

    The Pirates always complain about something when they play the Braves. When will they just accept the fact that the Braves are the better team. The outcome of the game isn’t going to change to stop complaining.

  • Anonymous

    Yes, we complain because the truth hurts, doesn’t it? Just because we don’t have the extra money to payoff the umps at our game doesn’t mean we aren’t a better theam. Blown calls= cheaters.

  • amy k

    it was just a way to end the game, he was to tired too see the call. i think he needs to open his eyes and realize he was clearly out.

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  • frustrated fan

    Although I think the call was wrong….there were plenty of opportunities to win the game. PIRATES: quit making excuses and go out and get a bat now before the weekend and all potential help is gone. Walker and Cutch need help.

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