04/07/12 11:35 PM ET
First ruled a homer, Longoria hit overturned
By Adam Berry / MLB.com
With Carlos Pena on first base, Longoria swung at the first pitch he saw from Yankees reliever Clay Rapada and hammered it toward the right-field wall, where a fan reached over the fence and reeled in the deep fly ball.
The umpires initially signaled that Longoria's blast was a home run -- it would have been his second in as many days to start the season -- but it appeared clear that the fan had interfered, and Yankees right fielder Nick Swisher immediately began to point toward the bleachers. After an instant-replay review that lasted three minutes and 32 seconds, the hit was deemed a ground-rule double.
"I can't really tell," Longoria said. "At that point, I'm kind of rounding first. It wasn't one that I could stand up and watch. It wasn't that far, so I was running pretty hard, just in case it did hit off the wall. When I glanced out there, it looked like the guy was standing up enough to where it would have gone over, but I guess that's the purpose of the replay.
"I think if we're on the other side, we would want them to take a look at it. Had it not been a home run, we wouldn't want it to be called a home run. I didn't even look at it, but I guess they got it right."
Longoria ended up scoring one batter later, when Matt Joyce knocked a two-run single to left field.
The fan charged with interference was wearing a Rays hat and, oddly enough, a Yankees jersey -- something New York first baseman Mark Teixeira was quick to point out to Longoria as he trotted back to second base.
The last time the Rays had a home run overturned was on Aug. 21, 2011, when Johnny Damon's homer against Seattle was reviewed and ruled a double.
The Rays have plenty of recent history with instant-replay review. The first review in Major League history occurred at Tropicana Field on Sept. 3, 2008 -- also against the Yankees -- when Alex Rodriguez's home run off Troy Percival was upheld. Tampa Bay benefited from the first overturned call via instant replay, too. On Sept. 19, 2008, Pena hit an apparent home run that was initially called fan interference, but it was eventually overturned and ruled a home run.