Thursday, October 13, 2005

how not to cover up a bad call

again, in the spirit of making yourself seem bulletproof, excuses have taken centerstage (and making things worse) than the smart way, of taking responsibility for a mistake.

last night, in the angles-white sox playoff game, angels pitcher kelvim escobar struck out sox hitter a.j. pierzinski on a pitch that may have been in the dirt. angels catcher josh paul caught it, umpire paul eddings rang him up and made the strike call, and everyone headed to the dugout - except for pierzinksi, who ran to first (a third strike has to be caught cleany, in case you don't know).

the umpires then called him safe at first.

now, whether it bounced or not the ball bounced is debatable and whether you get that right or not is human. it was the way the umpire changed his mind - or didn't let his call be known. nobody in that ballpark took his third-strike "mechanic" as anything other than "3rd out". that he got duped into changing his call is horrible.

it was a mistake - a fatal one, as three pitches later, he was driven home to win the game.

here's the problem: he made the call. he had no right to change it. and if that's not his "out" call, then there wasn't an out called in the whole game - or in the history of the game.

it was an out call, whether or not it was an out or not.

okay, it was a mistake. humans make mistakes.

but instead of taking responsibility, the umpires banded together and went off about how "the call was right" and that "he didn't call him out" and blah blah blah, when it's obvious that if pierzinksi didn't run, there would have been another inning to be played. and that if paul didn't think he caught the ball cleanly, he wouldn't have rolled it back to the mound before tagging him out. but with each excuse, it just sounds worse and worse and more incompetent.

this would have been nice: "although i originally called the batter out, i had a moment on indecision upon seeing pierzinski running to first base. upon further review, i should have stuck with my original call, but at that instant, i did not. i would like to apologize to the angels and their organization for my very human mistake." see, not so rough, huh?

instead, excuses, and making it worse.

bravo.

1 comment:

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