Cincinnati Reds shortstop Kyle Farmer (17) exits the batsman's box during the first inning of a baseball game against the Miami Marlins on Wednesday, July 27, 2022 at Great American Ball Park in Cincinnati.

A bizarre sequence in Reds, Orioles game

Cincinnati Reds shortstop Kyle Farmer (17) exits the batsman's box during the first inning of a baseball game against the Miami Marlins on Wednesday, July 27, 2022 at Great American Ball Park in Cincinnati.

Cincinnati Reds shortstop Kyle Farmer (17) exits the batsman’s box during the first inning of a baseball game against the Miami Marlins on Wednesday, July 27, 2022 at Great American Ball Park in Cincinnati.

The Great American Ball Park saw a strange game on Saturday night.

A reminder that baseball can be beautiful and confusing, each in its own way.

At the bottom of the fifth inning, Joy Votto began a brief spell of the pandemic, minutes after scoring his 10th home run of the season to give the Reds a 5-2 lead.

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With one out, Kyle Farmer flicks a bloop single into shallow right field.

Just behind him, Nick Senzel charged a line drive into the wall of left field, with the Orioles tracking fielder Austin Hayes along the way.

A hard-hit line drive flies over the head of Cincinnati Reds center fielder Nick Senzel (15) off Baltimore Orioles shortstop Jorge Mateo (3) for a triple in the seventh inning of an MLB Interleague game between the Cincinnati Reds and Baltimore.  The Orioles at Great American Ball Park on Friday, July 29, 2022 in Downtown Cincinnati.  The Orioles scored four runs in the top of the ninth to seal a 6-2 win over the Reds.

A hard-hit line drive flies over the head of Cincinnati Reds center fielder Nick Senzel (15) off Baltimore Orioles shortstop Jorge Mateo (3) for a triple in the seventh inning of an MLB Interleague game between the Cincinnati Reds and Baltimore. The Orioles at Great American Ball Park on Friday, July 29, 2022 in Downtown Cincinnati. The Orioles scored four runs in the top of the ninth to seal a 6-2 win over the Reds.

Hayes, who timed his jump perfectly, caught the ball in his glove from the wall. Hayes made a quick turn and sent the ball back inside.

“I saw it hit the wall, but you know, didn’t have form,” Senzel said. “And it was just like that. It’s not like he’s doing anything, just playing. He has a hard angle. It was so weird. It just hit the guy’s glove over the wall. But he still did.” Tossed it to first base.

The farmer was shutting down Senzel’s contact.

“Nick hit it hard,” said the farmer. “I saw (Hays) jump and jump really high and I saw the ball in his glove, I just ran back and did a scorpion slide, probably shook, but I don’t know. I feel bad for Nick in this Because you hit a ball so hard that you should get a hit. I thought he caught it.”

As the farmer was on his way back to first base, he passed Senzel, who stopped and raised his arms in confusion.

“A scorpion slide is when your feet move like this,” said the farmer, pointing to his hands. “You know what a scorpion looks like. My legs were scorpion bites.”

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The farmer’s face was struck by the dirt around the first base.

“The ground hit my face. My hand was caught and my face was covered with dirt,” said the farmer.

Initially, the Orioles left the field as if they had converted a double at the end of an innings, but Senzel and Farmer remained near first base, bewildered.

The umpires called briefly and Reds manager David Bell joined them. The umpires then made their way to the dugout in Baltimore to meet with Orioles manager Brandon Hyde.

“You think you know the game,” Bell said. “Then some things happen and they happen really fast. Clearly the farmer thought he caught the ball, which makes a lot of sense. He scrambles back, Nick sees he didn’t catch it , He is running.

“… to still be a runner out at the end of it all, we were happy with it. I thought the umpires did a good job. I went out to ask if they called it a catch. They really did Did a good job sorting and explaining it all. They were definitely on top of it.”

Senzel was called out and was not given a hit because Farmer did not advance to second base. Orioles first baseman Trey Mancini was credited with an unassisted putout based on the rule, which states: “When a runner is called to pass to another runner, the official scorer is the closest to the point of passing. Will give credit for the putout to the fielder.”

Senzel said, “I wasn’t too thrilled, but you know, I have a little time to think about it. There’s no ill-intentioned. We’re trying to win, trying to play, and These kinds of things happen. It’s weird how it happened.”

The head of the umpire crew, Larry Vanover, told a pool reporter about the sequence after the game.

“We have a batting ball off the wall that’s in the fielder’s glove,” Vanover said. “You have a base hit on play. The runner who was first is running on third, thinking the ball has been caught. He goes back first. They throw the ball in. Now the batter runner, who hits the ball. Hits, touches first and he passes to first runner, so he is out to pass. So there is an out in play. The man who was on base comes back first and is safe. There are two dismissals in the innings, we continue to play.

“The first runner didn’t see it. It was a confusing game. I’ve never been involved in a play like this. It was the first.”

Jake Fraley next extended his two-run home run lead to 7-2 for the Reds.

For all its glory, baseball and illusion seem destined to go together.

This article originally appeared on the Cincinnati Inquirer: A Bizarre Playback Confused Everyone at Reds, Orioles Game

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