Thornley: Working as an official scorer at the World Baseball Classic

From SABR member Stew Thornley at Twins Daily on April 13, 2017:

I’ve often pointed out that official scorers affect only statistics, not the outcome of a game. However, recently official scorers were put in a position in which they could affect the outcome of the World Baseball Classic, when earned runs were used as a tiebreaker in deciding which team moved on to the next round.

In the first two rounds of the World Baseball Classic, two teams advance to the next round. In the event of a tie for second, a tiebreaker game is played. However – with four teams playing round robin – the only tie for second place has to be a three-way tie. So a tiebreaker procedure is used to either anoint one team to move on and have the other two play it off (if the tied teams are 2-1) or to eliminate a team and have the other two play (if the tied teams are 1-2).

The latter is what happened in Jalisco, Mexico. I was the official scorer. My wife, Brenda Himrich, made the press box announcements in Spanish. She was in the modified press box in the upper deck while I was in a room at the top of the first deck. I’d tell her my scoring decision via walkie-talkie, and she announced it to the press in Spanish.

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Originally published: April 13, 2017. Last Updated: April 13, 2017.