New Yankees hero Harrison Bader drills controversial Jeffrey Maier home run vs A's
By Adam Weinrib
Wednesday afternoon's matinee Yankees game against the Oakland Athletics was already fated to be a weird one long before Harrison Bader stepped to the plate in the bottom of the first inning.
But by the end of his at-bat, the oddball right field crowd sealed it.
Bader stepped up with two men on and two out in the first following a Gleyber Torres sac fly, and did what he does best, lifting and separating deep into right field with a shot to reach the stands.
It ... it did reach the seats, but upon further review, that only occurred because two men appeared to reach over right fielder JJ Bleday's glove and impede his opportunity to catch the ball.
After a brief review, the umpires somehow did not see it that way. Home run. But see for yourself.
Gerrit Cole's reaction to Yankees Harrison Bader controversial home run was amazing
Hopefully, no one interviews the person who nabbed the ball. At least this time, it was a random grown man at a day game instead of Jeffrey Maier, a 12-year-old boy and viral sensation.
This dinger placed Bader fifth on the Yankees in RBI for the 2023 season, which officially began for him just over a week ago; this is his eighth game played of the season.
But was it a good call or fan interference? It should come as no surprise that A's broadcaster/Alex Rodriguez's enemy Dallas Braden thinks Bleday's glove was "perfectly aligned with where the ball was headed," even though it was falling off as it hit the wall/probably couldn't rob anything without being attached to his hand.
Fans went through the ecstasy of victory and the agony of defeat, then the ecstasy of victory again while trying to figure out what exactly had happened with Bader's shot. Perhaps no fan felt the roller coaster of emotions more than Gerrit Cole in the dugout, who was just trying to have a good time.
Extend Harrison Bader now. Ask questions later.
Apparently, he can hit, field, and wield power over Laz Diaz. That should be plenty argument enough for keeping him in the culture as this team tries to dig out of an early hole.