What Happened During Controversial Red Sox Out Against Houston On Wednesday’s ALCS Game

Jena Greene | Reporter

This season’s ALCS may be the most fury-filled and controversial matchup since the 2004 Red Sox-Yankees rivalry.

On Wednesday night, the Red Sox clinched their third win of the series (the Astros have only one), but it wasn’t without discrepancy.

Most of the chatter came after the bottom of the first inning, when Red Sox outfielder Mookie Betts leaped for what looked like a home run — until a fan reached his hand out and possibly knocked the ball out of his glove. (RELATED: Star Red Sox Pitcher Hospitalized During Playoffs)

You can watch the full cut, along with a slower version of the several seconds in question, below:

That fan who knocked the ball out of Betts’ grip is Troy Caldwell, who also may be the angriest man in Houston.

“I don’t understand even what happened,” Caldwell said, per the Boston Globe. “I was over the line and the ball hit — I had my hands out. You can see it. I got like 800 pictures that already came to me — but I’m over the line, and I put my hand out, and the ball hit my hand. I never touched his glove. I don’t understand why it wasn’t a home run.”

Field umpire Joe West ultimately determined Caldwell interfered with the play and ruled it an out. It was still early on in the game, but Houston fans are understandably upset.

What complicates matters is that MLB regulation typically doesn’t call fan interference when a ball is already over the wall. Here, it looks like it could have been, but the MLB play review team in New York City agreed with West and ruled batter Jose Altuve out.

“That ball was gone, no matter what. My hand wasn’t over the yellow,” Caldwell continued. “My hand was right here and it hit my hand so it was a home run, no matter what.”

The Sox ended up winning the game 8–6 with three games (at most) remaining in the ALCS. Boston leads the series 3–1, and if they win in Houston Thursday night, they head to the World Series.

“If Boston wins this series, then Joe West is the MVP,” Caldwell said with just a hint of bitterness. “I’ll give that to you right now.”

Right. It’s the umpires that’ll get Boston to the World Series. Not some of the best baseball talent the MLB has seen in recent league history:

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