7/8 Byrd's the word
It was quite the night for Marlon Byrd. He made a great catch in the fifth, a baserunning gaffe, and was ejected in the ninth. First base umpire Hunter Wendelstedt said Byrd went around on his swing in the ninth, although the Cubs center fielder disagreed. As he headed to the dugout, Byrd was muttering to himself and somehow the umpire heard him.
“The umpire at first base said he heard him talking to him, complaining to him,” Lou Piniella said. “That was it.”
Byrd called it a “misunderstanding.”
“I was talking to myself, going over the at-bat in my head, and Hunter thought I was talking to him,” Byrd said. “When I was walking toward him, I wasn’t even thinking. I was walking toward him to have a conversation and you can’t do that.”
Byrd also made one of two baserunning miscues in the third. Ryan Theriot singled with one out and was caught stealing. Byrd then singled, but was nabbed in a rundown as he overran the bag.
“I was trying to be aggressive, hoping the ball would kick away,” Byrd said. “It was sort of stupid baserunning on my part, especially with two outs, and Derrek Lee coming up. You have to stay on the bag and hopefully get something going.”
Byrd did make a stellar catch in the Dodgers fifth. With two outs, Clayton Kershaw reached on an error by Aramis Ramirez and Randy Wells hit Rafael Furcal. Matt Kemp lofted the ball toward the gap in right center and Byrd tracked it down at the wall to end the inning.
“Right when he hit it, I had to put my head down and run to a spot and hopefully I didn’t lose it because it was twilight time,” Byrd said. “I got to the spot and thank goodness, I had enough speed to get out there.”
– Carrie Muskat