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Fan interference wipes out possible homer for Altuve in ALCS

18 October 2018

Many of their fans are likely blaming a controversial first-inning call by right field umpire Joe West that denied Jose Altuve a potential game-tying two-run home run. "My hand was right here and it hit my hand so it was a home run, no matter what".

Major League Baseball issued a statement about the video ruling: "After viewing all relevant angles, the replay official could not definitely determine that the spectator failed to reach out of the stands and over the playing field, clearly preventing the fielder from catching the ball".

Instead of a homer, Altuve was ruled out, and the fans at Minute Maid Park made their disapproval of the call known with a hefty amount of boos.

Red Sox right fielder Mookie Betts tracked the ball all the way to the wall, before timing his leap and making an attempt to reach over the wall to steal the home run.

MLB's official explanation is that replay officials were unable to find conclusive evidence to overturn the call on the field - specifically, they couldn't determine if the spectator reached over the fence into the field of play - and therefore stayed with the original decision, as relayed by Joe Sherman of the New York Post.

Two rules appear to be at play here.

Twitter went nuts over the ruling.

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"Jose pays the biggest price because the trajectory of the ball looked like it was going to leave the ballpark".

"As long as the Astros come back and win this we'll be all right", Caldwell said during the game.

Boston now leads the best-of-seven series 3-1 - meaning they are one win away from reaching the World Series.

However, the game didn't just hinge on that call. The problem is Boston outfielder Mookie Betts also was trying to catch it. "I would do the same", Altuve said after Astros lost the play-offs game 8-6.

A fan wearing an orange Astros jersey, who identified himself as Troy Caldwell, insisted he wasn't reaching out over the yellow line atop the 7-foot-high fence when the ball hit his hand. "That's why I called spectator interference". "There's a lot of action in that game". Hinch went out to discuss the situation with West, who had a brief consultation with the rest of the six-man umpire crew before the play was reviewed. No, I'm not going to go there. But that's not the difference.

"I don't understand even what happened", said Caldwell, per the Boston Globe.

Fan interference wipes out possible homer for Altuve in ALCS