Diamondbacks manager Chip Hale’s ejection was some sort of zen

Jun 7, 2016, 9:28 PM | Updated: 10:20 pm

Arizona Diamondbacks manager Chip Hale, middle, argues with umpires Mark Ripperger, left, and Kerwi...

Arizona Diamondbacks manager Chip Hale, middle, argues with umpires Mark Ripperger, left, and Kerwin Danley before Hale was thrown out of the game for arguing a called third strike during the fourth inning of the team's baseball game against the Tampa Bay Rays on Tuesday, June 7, 2016, in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

(AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

Diamondbacks manager Chip Hale has taken his lumps this season, but criticism is usually reserved for losing decisions.

The manager’s most notable decision Tuesday in Arizona’s 5-0 victory against the Tampa Bay Rays turned out to be a winning one.

It came in the fourth inning when the umpires changed a third-strike, foul-tip to an out on D-backs hitter Brandon Drury. Seeing that the game was tied with Arizona runners on the corners, the change in the call didn’t sit well with Hale.

After the umpires conferred among themselves without review available, Hale walked out of the dugout for a lengthy conversation with Mark Ripperger and crew before getting tossed.

While it appeared the officials were discussing whether Drury struck out on a whiff (he did) rather than fouling the ball off, Hale said the umpires were actually determining if the ball hit the dirt. All along, they believed Drury had made contact and ultimately determined it was a strikeout because they believed the ball did not hit the ground (replays showed it did).

“I said, ‘The ball hit the dirt,’ ” Hale told media after the game. “I just said, ‘I’m not going to leave.’ So he threw me out. You always want to stick up for your players.”

But hey, it was all good news from there for the Diamondbacks.

Despite taking their second out of the inning, Jake Lamb promptly smashed a three-run shot to give Arizona the lead, making Hale’s ejection quite the turning point for the D-backs, coincidence or not.

“It fired me up a little bit,” Lamb told FOX Sports Arizona afterward. “You got to back up the manager. He’s got our backs.”

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Diamondbacks manager Chip Hale’s ejection was some sort of zen