ST. PETERSBURG -- The Rays lost their challenge in the fourth inning of Saturday night's 7-0 win over the Red Sox at Tropicana Field. Minutes later, Boston squandered an opportunity to challenge a play by waiting too long.
With Tampa Bay holding a 3-0 lead, Brandon Guyer led off the bottom of the fourth by chopping routinely to short, but Boston's Xander Bogaerts sailed his throw high of Allen Craig at first base. Craig managed to make a leaping catch and attempted to swipe-tag Guyer as he was crossing the bag.
First-base umpire Mike Estabrook called Guyer out, ruling that Craig had tagged him, and Rays manager Joe Maddon came out to challenge the call.
After a one-minute, 34-second review, the ruling on the field stood.
Three batters later, after singles by Logan Forsythe and Ryan Hanigan, Kevin Kiermaier was awarded first base by home-plate umpire Mike DiMuro on a hit-by-pitch. Boston skipper John Farrell thought the pitch had hit Kiermaier's bat, not his arm, as DiMuro ruled.
"Partially, it did hit the bat, but it also pinched my skin to the bat, and that's why I had the reaction I did," Kiermaier said. "Like, it actually did hit me. I was looking at my hand hoping I had a mark so I could be like, 'Hey, look at this' -- so I could prove it. And I was like, 'Man, this is going to go against me, I'm going to have to go hit again with an 0-1 count.'"
Farrell requested a challenge, but the umpires determined that by the time he did, the next play had started, with pitcher Allen Webster on the rubber and batter Ben Zobrist in the box. That would mean the Red Sox could no longer challenge the hit-by-pitch.
The umpires convened in the infield to discuss whether the play had indeed started, and they decided that it had. Zobrist went on to drive in Forsythe on a fielder's choice, Tampa Bay's only run of the frame.
The Rays protested a game against the Blue Jays last week when the umpires allowed a challenge in a similar situation. Toronto manager John Gibbons successfully challenged a safe call on a pickoff of Wil Myers at first base, even though the Rays argued that Toronto pitcher Mark Buehrle had already stepped back onto the rubber and Yunel Escobar had entered the box.
Did Maddon feel vindicated that Saturday's umpiring crew didn't allow Farrell's challenge?
"Just another win for the Rays," he said.
David Adler is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.