One Blown Call

Posted by on Jun 3 in Build Our Ballpark

26 hitters in a row – one to go and another perfect game in the record books. A hard-hit ground ball to the right side of the infield, pitcher covers first base in plenty of time – runner is easily out.

But no. With one blown call, a perfect game becomes a one-hitter, and baseball, a game built on stats and history, loses another potential record – three perfect games in one season.

And the career of one of Major League Baseball’s finest umpires will forever be stained by one call. Jim Joyce will join a very select fraternity of Umps, including Don Denkinger, a resident of my hometown and a friend. Don has seen a sterling 30-year career marred in this same manner.

OK, you ask, would you agree to having “Bud” rally the heavy breathers of baseball and overturn this call? Would you agree to prolonging the game with the use of (what is sure to be) an oncoming nemesis called “Instant Replay”? Would you throw out 165 years of hot-stove league arguments (the kind of stuff that has made baseball such wonderful fodder for thousands of books, movies and works of art)?

Or, given the classy way the pitcher and the ump handled themselves – and baseball tradition – would you let the call stand?

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