Thursday, June 3, 2010

The Imperfect Game of Baseball

Baseball's unwillingness to sacrifice tradition for doing the right thing is archaic and pathetic.  It also cost the Tigers' Galarraga a perfect game yesterday.  With just 1 out away from perfection in the 9th, a grounder was fielded and the subsequent throw to first beat the runner by half a step - a call that umpires see correctly probably, what, at least 95% of the time?  However, umpire Joyce called it incorrectly and to his credit, admitted and apologized for it after seeing the replay.  Thus, Galarragga incredulously lost his perfect game - a phenomenon that has only happened 20 times in history.

I have to reiterate what I've said for years.  Why is there not instant replay in baseball?  There is no game clock.  There is about 30 seconds between each pitch.  Every viewer on TV sees a replay 5 seconds after it happens.  Why can't there be an umpire upstairs who reviews each play and signals down when something should be reviewed?  Or why can't each manager be given something like 5 challenges per game?  I am not talking about balls and strikes, but every single play in the field can easily be reviewed.  Baseball is the only sport where you can be just about 100% correct.  To me it is inexcusable that they don't treasure accuracy.  Its laughable that a sport so concerned about exact stats embraces human error in their umpires.  Galarraga was robbed but it wasn't really the ump's fault.  Its baseball's fault.

With word this morning that Selig won't overturn the call, its clear that the commissioner is as impotent now as he was during the steroid era.  This is not about precedent.  This is about doing the right thing.  Baseball clearly has no interest in that.

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