ARLINGTON -- For the fourth time this season, Blue Jays manager John Gibbons challenged a stolen-base call that was overturned. In the Rangers' 2-0 loss Friday to the Blue Jays, it could have been a game changer.
The game was scoreless with no outs in the third inning when Rangers center fielder Leonys Martin came to the plate. He sent a single to center field and attempted to steal second during second baseman Rougned Odor's at-bat.
As he slid, Toronto shortstop Jose Reyes applied the tag from catcher Erik Kratz's throw. Martin knew the call could go either way.
"It was tight, it was close," Martin said. "He tagged me on my leg and it was close. I was trying to make something happen."
Martin was called safe by umpire Dan Iassogna. If the call had held up, the Rangers would have had a runner on second with no outs. But Gibbons felt that Reyes' tag was applied in time and decided to challenge Iassogna's call.
"I thought he got him," Gibbons said. "Iassogna's a good umpire out there though."
Gibbons' gut feeling was correct, and the overturned call was crucial for the Blue Jays, who ended the inning when Odor and Shin-Soo Choo both grounded out.
"Otherwise the guy is sitting on second with no outs, and you never know what happens," Gibbons said. "They were about to turn over to the top of their lineup. That was a big call for us."
Rangers manager Ron Washington agreed that the call could have changed the game.
"Any time you lose out, it's pivotal. Especially when you lose that close to home plate," he said. "But it was obvious he was out."
Grace Raynor is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.