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Why Was Tampa Bay/Philadelphia Game Tie Graded a Phillies Win?

Written by:
Don Shapiro
Published on:
Oct/29/2008
Philadelphia Phillies

When Monday night's World Series game between the Tampa Bay Rays and Philadelphia Phillies was suspended due to inclement weather, most fans just figured they would catch the rest of the postponed event the next night or - in actuality - Wednesday night (since the game was cancelled on Tuesday).  For sports bettors it was an entirely different story.  The Philadelphia Phillies were graded as a win and those who had money on Tampa Bay weren't exactly thrilled by that outcome.

(see Philadelphia Phillies Win 2008 World Series - Payouts here)

"Despite what appeared to happen Monday night in Philadelphia, the Tampa Bay Rays lost Game 5 of the World Series. At least in the view of Nevada sports books, the Phillies won 2-1," wrote Matt Youmans of the Las Vegas Review Journal.

Nevada gaming rules - which most online sports betting sites follow - stipulate that the final score of an official game is determined by reverting to the last completed inning. The Phillies led 2-1 after the fifth.

Wagers on totals and run-line bets are being refunded because rules stipulate that at least 81/2 innings must be played.

"We're just following the regular baseball rules. This is a very common rule," Las Vegas Hilton sports book director Jay Kornegay said. "We can't make exceptions.

It didn't matter Wednesday night whether Tampa Bay actually walked off with a victory either, which they did not as the Philadelphia Eagles ended up winning the 2008 World Series.

The books stuck to their strict guidelines - unlike Bud Selig - and followed though with the procedure.

"A baseball game becomes official for moneyline betting purposes after 4 ½ innings if the home team is winning, or five innings if the visiting team is winning," Randy Scott, sportsbook manager of betED.com told Covers.com. "Events do not carry over to the following day."

Commissioner Selig has endured some heavy criticism for his decision to play Monday's game, finally suspending the match once Tampa Bay tied the score in the top of the sixth.

Sportsbooks had to deal with many unhappy customers because of the situation, Covers points out.

One Las Vegas book took a different stance on the unusual circumstances. ESPN.com reports the MGM/Mirage Properties will wait until tonight's completion before determining the winning bet.  But that remained the exception rather than the rule.

Don Shapiro, Gambling911.com

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