Why two runs were charged to Jak

Several readers of this blog have written wondering why starting pitcher Chris Jakubauskas was charged with two runs in Thursday night’s game against the Angels although only one of the two runners he put on base in actually scored.

After retiring 15 of the first 18 batters he faced, the rookie surrendered singles to two of the three batters he faced in the sixth inning and was replaced by Roy Corcoran with one out and runners on first and third. Corcoran recorded an out by inducing Torii Hunter to hit a high chopper to third baseman Adrian Beltre, who threw the ball to catcher Rob Johnson who tagged out Chone Figgins. Bobby Abreu, who had singled off Jakubauskas, went to second and Hunter reached first.

Both runners eventually scored and although Jakubauskas never actually faced Hunter, according to the official baseball rules, Hunter was still Jak’s responsibility.

The rule says: The departing pitcher is responsible for any runners that he allowed to reach base who are there when he leaves. If a runner is “replaced” at a base due to a fielder’s choice, the “replacement” runner is charged to the same pitcher the original runner was.
Rule 10.18, says “It is the intent of this rule to charge each pitcher with the number of runners he put on base, rather than with the individual runners.”

In short, the rules makers believe a relief pitcher should not penalized for getting an out, but Corcoran was still beating himself up this afternoon for allowing any runs to score in that decisive sixth inning.

“It was just a bad pitch, a really bad pitch,” he said of the 0-and-2 pitch he threw to Mike Napoli that was hit into center field for a two-out, two-run single. Before the inning ended, the Angels had scored five runs.

In other hot-off-the-press news, left-hander Cesar Jiminez threw a 30-pitch simulated game prior to tonight’s game. He will throw another on Tuesday and if all goes well, he’ll begin a rehab assignment next Thursday.

Left-hander Jarrod Washburn returned to work after missing all of yesterday with the flu. He gave a pretty graphic description of his illness, but the less said, the better. He is expected to make his next start, which is Tuesday against the Rays at Safeco Field.

— Jim Street

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