Bud Selig, Here Is Your Chance To Do The Right Thing

June 2, 2010 – 10:39 pm by Ryan Phillips

As we all know by now, Detroit Tigers starting pitcher Armando Galarraga was robbed of a perfect game Wednesday afternoon thanks to an awful call by umpire Jim Joyce. While this was a tragedy, there is something that can be done after the fact. And it should be done as soon as possible.

After retiring the first 26 batters he faced, Galarraga induced a ground ball from Cleveland’s Jason Donald with two outs in the ninth inning. First baseman Miguel Cabrera fielded the ball and tossed it back to Galarraga, who clearly stepped on the base before Donald, for what should have been the final out of a perfect game. Joyce saw it differently at the time.

To be fair to Joyce, umpiring is an awful job and after the game he was quoted as saying, “It was the biggest call of my career, and I kicked the (stuff) out of it. I just cost that kid a perfect game.”

To the guy’s credit he knows he screwed up and something tells me he won’t be sleeping well for the next few weeks.

Galarraga then retired Trevor Crowe to end the game with a 3-0 win and a one-hitter.

This is not over though. No one should think it is.

While Galarraga didn’t get to have his celebration on the field, he absolutely deserves to be put into the record books because, frankly, he pitched a perfect game.

Major League Baseball commissioner Bud Selig should overrule Joyce’s call. It’s not like this happened in the fourth inning and we don’t know what would have happened had the call been different. The game would have been over, so there can be no speculation over what would have happened had if the call is changed. Selig should rule the play an out, take Donald’s single out of the box score and change the official statistics to read as if the game ended at that point.

I realize it sets a bad precedent for a commissioner to overrule his on-field officials but this is an extraordinary case. Everyone on the planet knows Armando Galarraga deserves to go down in history as having pitched a perfect game.

This is a chance for Selig – probably the most maligned commissioner in sports history – to get something right. To stand apart from the crowd and make a decision that is clearly correct. He needs to do it as soon as possible too. As in, like tomorrow.

Umpire Jim Joyce screwed up. Hey, it happens. The guy is owning his mistake and clearly feels awful about it. Selig could ease his suffering by making this move as well.

The argument for instant replay in Major League Baseball has been growing more and more convincing over the past few seasons. This is yet another point in favor of such a move. The “human element” argument is one of the weakest in all of sports and instant replay could only serve to help better the product between the lines.

But until such a system is in place, this decision falls squarely on the hunched shoulders of Allan Huber “Bud” Selig. We should all be hoping he does the right thing.

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  1. 7 Responses to “Bud Selig, Here Is Your Chance To Do The Right Thing”

  2. Armando was a class act tonight.

    If Bud fails to do the right thing and preserve the history that DID occur tonight, then, perhaps the official scorer COULD rule the play an error thereby at least insuring Armando can live his life with a bona-fide “no hitter” on the record books.

    By John in the D on Jun 2, 2010

  3. And its not like we don’t already have a form of (very limited) instant reply already…..so changing an ump’s call after the fact won’t be setting a new precedent.

    By Phil on Jun 3, 2010

  4. We need to start a nation wide petition for all to sign that agree that Bud Selig should have that call reversed and have some justice in America! Someone please start the petiton!

    By Dave on Jun 3, 2010

  5. The NBA did it….Stern did it….Perkins deserved it!The Celtics faced ‘elimination’ by the Magic if the automatic ejection rule were enforced. Anybody watching the game would agree that the two fouls called against Celtic center were incorrect. Obviously WRONG!!!

    The League did the right and fair thing by reversing those calls! Nobody complained, or more specifically, the Orlando Magic did not complain. What’s right, is right.

    MLB is faced with a similar situation, i.e., reversing a obviously errant call. Hopefully, they won’t ‘hide’ behind a limited/ arcane ‘review’ rule ( only used for questionable HR’s or foul balls).

    Such a move would be positive P.R. for the grand old game, and , more importantly, help usher it into the 21st Century.

    Thsi made be the only chance Galaragga gets to enter into the Hall of Fame, credited with a well deserved NO-Hitter. The Indians? They have nothing to lose…..except another game. Their gain? A better amateur draft position.

    Come Bud. Do the right thing. You owe it to the fans!

    By Berdell Hardy on Jun 3, 2010

  6. ESPN interviewed retired Ump Dan Denkenger about his infamous ‘blown’ call in the 1985 WS, and what he thinks will be Selig’s likely intervention with last night’s blown call by fellow ump Jim Joyce at Comerica Park. His reply: “I would be totally surprised if he (Selig) would change it.” On a follow-up question about why didn’t the plate umpire over-rule the call (assuming he saw it differently), his response: “I would never do it, nor would I expect any ump to do it”.

    By Berdell Hardy on Jun 3, 2010

  7. Time to fine umpires for mistakes and time to stop the disgusting spitting on the field by every player and manager. What a horrible example they set for out young boys!!!!!

    By Pat on Jun 3, 2010

  8. I AGREE WITH BERDELL HARDY THAT THERE SHOULD BE A NATIONAL MOVEMENT TO OVERTURN THE CALL. BUD SELIGH HAS THE POWER TO DO SOMETHING FOR THE FANS AND GAME OF BASEBALL AND HE SHOULD DO IT WITHOUT HESITATION REPLAY OR NO REPLAY HE HAS THE POWER AND HE SHOULD USE IT. IF HE DOES NOT I WILL BE SICK AND I WILL THINGK OF THE UNJUSTICE THAT YOUNG MAN WILL LIVE WITH AND SO WILL I EVERY TIME I WATCH A MLB GAME. I COULD LIVE WITH THE CHANGE NO MATTER WHAT ANYONE HAD TO SAY AND I WOULD ALSO LOOK FORWARD TO WATHCHING PROFESSIONAL BASEBALL. GUYS THEESE ARE PROS NO HS OR COLLEGE. I PRAY THAT BUD SELIG WILL DO THE RIGHT THING FOR THE MLB.

    By JOE MARTIN on Jun 3, 2010

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