Dodgers-Twins game delayed nearly 20 minutes after double switch goes wrong

Either Minnesota Twins manager Paul Molitor made the most complicated double switch of all-time, or there was a massive miscommunication between him and the umpires during Tuesday night’s game against the Los Angeles Dodgers.

The move in question went down in the bottom of the sixth inning. After a first-pitch ball to Yasiel Puig, Molitor came out to make a substitution. That’s when all hell broke loose.

Dodgers manager Dave Roberts challenged the double switch, causing the umps to stop the game and review the situation.

None of the reporters covering the game knew what was going on at the time, and were surprised to see Twins outfielder Eddie Rosario leaving the game. By wRC+, an advanced stat that measures a player’s offensive contributions, Rosario is the second-best hitter on the Twins this season. It seemed strange that Molitor would want to remove him from the contest.

After some debate between all three parties, the umps eventually went to replay review in order to sort things out.

Though we can’t recall a time it’s happened before, that is allowed per MLB rules. Here’s the relevant passage on replay review from MLB.com:

The Crew Chief may communicate with the Replay Official at any time during a game for purposes of: (a) record-keeping (i.e., to review the ball-strike count to a batter, the number of outs in an inning, and the score of the game); (b) determining whether a player or players properly were substituted for during a game pursuant to Official Baseball Rules 5.10.

The delay lasted so long that Puig actually walked back into the clubhouse to get some coffee while things were being sorted out.

The umps eventually determined Rosario had to leave the game. He was replaced by pitcher Ryan Pressly. Ehire Adrianza replaced Trevor Hildenberger in the pitcher’s slot.

The total time of the delay was 18 minutes, according to the official scorer. It felt much longer.

Confused about what the heck just happened? Well, we can’t blame you. Even the Twins’ official Twitter account was unsure about what went down.

After all that, the Twins lost the contest 6-2. The time of the game, including the delay, was three hours and thirty-five minutes.

Paul Molitor ran into some issues Tuesday night. (AP Photo)

Molitor explained after the game that the whole thing was due to a miscommunication.

Molitor did not intend to take Rosario out of the game, but either he didn’t articulate his switch well or the umps misunderstood. The changes he made to his lineup card were not the same changes they made on theirs. They relayed the changes to Roberts, and he complained after Molitor’s moves didn’t reflect his information from the umps. Molitor took responsibility for the error, saying he should have made sure the umps had the right lineup changes.

Still, confused? Yeah, we are too.

Rob Manfred can’t be too happy about the delay. He’s made it a point to try and reduce the length of games since he’s taken over as commissioner. Instituting a universal DH could have saved a lot of time in this instance, we’re just saying.

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Chris Cwik is a writer for Big League Stew on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at christophercwik@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!

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