Cincinnati Reds prospect José Siri’s record-setting 39-game hit streak came to an end Friday night in a game against the Great Lakes Loons. Normally, we would congratulate Siri and move on, but there’s a lot more to the story in this instance.
You see, Siri’s hit streak came to an end in controversial fashion. He stepped to the plate in the eighth inning with the streak on the line. At that point, Siri was 0-3. With his team, the Dayton Dragons, trailing 4-1, it looked like this would be his final opportunity to keep the streak alive.
The first pitch of the at-bat from Ryan Moseley sailed behind Siri’s back, and that’s when things started to look awfully suspicious. The next two pitches were pretty far inside as well. Siri did try to bunt one of them, bringing the count to 2-1.
Moseley then kept almost everything else way off the plate. One 2-2 pitch leaked back into the zone, but Siri hit it foul. With the count 3-2, Moseley threw a ball about four feet outside to walk Siri. Four feet might not be an exaggeration either. It was way off the plate.
But in case you wanted to take a look at the at-bat with your own eyes, here’s some video:
Siri was clearly frustrated about the at-bat. He just stands at the plate for a second before flipping his bat behind him and walking to first. Once there, he and Moseley exchange some words, and … the benches clear.
Yep, a walk cleared the benches in a baseball game. You don’t see that often.
Siri must have been pretty upset. He stole second a few pitches later and scored on a wild pitch later in the inning. The Dragons lost 4-2.
The 22-year-old Siri didn’t begin the season as one of the team’s top-30 prospects according to Baseball America, but has worked his way onto analysts’ radars. Baseball Prospectus named Siri as the Reds’ 10th best prospect in a July update.
His hit streak probably had something to do with that. Siri broke the previous record in the Midwest League, which sat at 36 games. He was in the midst of extending that streak.
At least one other minor leaguer has chimed in to support Siri. Tampa Bay Rays pitching prospect Brent Honeywell posted a note on Twitter calling Moseley’s actions “bush,” as in bush league.
Honeywell has no connection with either team. The Loons are an affiliate of the Los Angeles Dodgers. He’s merely expressing his opinion – something he’s done a lot – about two guys he occasionally plays against.
So, where do you stand on this one? It’s pretty weak for a pitcher to try and hit a guy to intentionally end his hit streak. It also seems pretty lame that he would then chirp back at him from the mound and pretend like nothing he did was wrong.
At the same time, all is fair in baseball, right? It wasn’t against the rules and the game wasn’t out of hand. Plus, Siri did have at least one pitch to hit and failed to take advantage of it. You may not like Moseley’s actions, but there’s nothing preventing him from doing what he did.
If there’s a positive to the kerfuffle, Siri got a well-deserved day off in the Dragons’ next game. His arms and legs were probably pretty tired after smacking all those hits.
(BLS H/N: Deadspin)
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