Umpire admits erring on Wise's disputed catch
Yankees left fielder dove into stands in pursuit of ball, mistakenly was awarded out
NEW YORK -- Dewayne Wise was as surprised as anybody in Yankee Stadium on Tuesday night, when third-base umpire Mike DiMuro called Jack Hannahan's popup -- and Wise's leaping effort into the stands -- an out, while Yankees fan Vinnie Pellegrino proudly held the ball above his head.
The ball hit Wise's glove for a moment as he fell into the seats down the third-base line, and DiMuro, believing Wise secured the ball, made an out call after Wise disappeared into the crowd.
"Dewayne was just coming into the seats, and it hit the seats, and then the ball hit something -- whether it hit him or the seats -- and I came up with it," said Pellegrino.
Pellegrino attempted to put the ball back in the left fielder's glove, but with Wise too far away, Pellegrino lifted it for 43,006 at Yankee Stadium to see.
"What was I supposed to do? Run back to left field?" asked Wise, whose catch marked the final out of the seventh inning and left a Cleveland runner stranded on third base in a 6-4 Yankees win. "So I ran off the field."
DiMuro ejected Hannahan an inning later, when the third baseman took the field after seeing the replay and questioned the 13-year-veteran umpire.
"I can live with the fact that he didn't see the fan two feet away from where Dewayne dove into stands, jumping up and down, excited he got a foul ball. I can live with that," Hannahan said. "But to not ask Dewayne to see the ball is absolutely inexcusable. ... I asked him about it, and he gave me an early hook, too."
Hannahan also took issue with DiMuro's second-inning call on a Chris Stewart ground ball down the third-base line that drove in the first of three Yankees runs that inning. The ball kicked off Hannahan's glove down the line, and DiMuro called it fair.
"All I said to him was he blew the call and he blew the call in the second inning that cost us three runs," Hannahan said. "That was right in front of him."
Hannahan said he did not curse at DiMuro, and DiMuro said he tossed the third baseman after Hannahan told him to reference the replay. DiMuro did after New York's win, and he acknowledged the mistake.
"I went out on the ball and saw the ball into his glove in his stands. He disappeared into the stands, and I believed that the ball was in his glove," DiMuro said. "In hindsight, I should have asked him to show me the ball, since he fell into the stands and out of my line of vision."
Others in each clubhouse were more forgiving than Hannahan. Yankee manager Joe Girardi called it "a difficult time to be an umpire" with the evolution of television. Center fielder Curtis Granderson called it "a little human error." A grateful Phil Hughes, on the mound for the out, admitted, "Sometimes you get lucky."
"You can't blame an umpire for not being able to make that correct call," said Indians manager Manny Acta. "Once a guy takes forever over there, how can you tell if he dropped the ball and put it in his glove, or if a fan said, 'Here'? It's a tough play."
Steven Miller is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.