Juuuuuuust a bit outside, he tried for the dugout and missed.
That’s what happened in the ninth inning of Tuesday night’s game when the Yankees reliever Michael King tried to toss his PitchCom device into the dugout.
However, the pitcher with a 1.95 ERA and 30 strikeouts on the season could not keep the defective device from sailing into the stands.
“I’m not used to throwing a rectangular little piece of electronics,” King said with a smile, via the AP.
With the Yanks down one, the right-hander got Ryan McKenna swinging when he removed the PitchCom from his belt and hurled it away after failing to work things out with catcher Ben Rortvedt.
“The one that I got didn’t work. I don’t know if it just wasn’t activated or what,” King said. “It just happened where I was hitting a slider at the same time that Ben was hitting a sinker. So every time I hit a slider, it was coming through as a sinker.”
“I got nervous ’cause I know you can call time for PitchCom, but I didn’t know if you could do it for a transmitter malfunction. So I just took it off and chucked it,” King said, referencing baseball’s new pace of play rules. “I thought it was definitely going to land in front of our dugout, and then it kind of took off like a frisbee and I saw it floating.
“And then I saw it almost hit a fan. And then, apparently, they were hitting the button. Luckily it wasn’t working.”
The right-hander worked around a two-out walk before Aaron Judge’s home run tied the game in the bottom half of the inning. After a 1-2-3 10th, in which King struck out a pair, the Yanks got the win on Anthony Volpe’s walk-off sacrifice fly.
The device was later retrieved by stadium personnel and returned to the home dugout. “We did get it back,” manager Aaron Boone confirmed.
Fortunately for King, the device’s retrieval likely saved him the $5,000 replacement fee MLB imposes for losing a device. A punishment the reliever had “no idea” about.
Of course, that is if Hal Steinbrenner decided to send the 27-year-old the bill for his wild toss.
“I would hope not,” King said. “I’m very happy that [we got it] back then.”