One for the Record
There is no question that umpire Jim Joyce made a bad call in the game that cost Detroit pitcher Armando Galarraga a perfect game. But umpiring, and bad calls, have always been a part of baseball.
How many times in the history of major league baseball has a game been decided by an incorrect call by an umpire? To my knowledge, none of these calls were reversed, even with the outcome of the game at stake.
We teach our youth that baseball is a team sport, and the importance of personal records ranks somewhere below team performance and sportsmanship. How do we justify making the demand for a precedent-setting reversal in this case, when the only thing at stake (albeit a very big one) is the personal record of a perfect game?
If Commissioner Bud Selig reverses this call, Galarraga will go down in history as the pitcher who was awarded a perfect game by a controversial and unprecedented decision by the commissioner to overturn an umpire’s call.
As it stands now, Galarraga will forever be remembered as the pitcher who threw a perfect game that is not listed in the record books as such. More importantly, he will be remembered as the man who handled this injustice with a grace, dignity and sportsmanship rarely seen in modern professional sports.
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