Monday, July 6, 2009

Lousy Umpiring

Out of desperation, or perhaps because I love baseball, I have continued to subject myself to repeated losses by the Class A Sarasota Reds team. I have now watched them play 15 games. Among them the Reds have won two. Could it be because I'm in the stands?

Last week the Reds played the Tampa Yankees on Monday night. Predictably they lost (I was in the stands after all). The Tuesday night game was rained out when it appeared that building an ark was the only way to survive here. A double-header was scheduled for Wednesday night to make up for Tuesday's rain out. However on Wednesday the rain was even more intense than Tuesday - and we didn't have a tropical system anywhere nearby.

Thursday night July 2 the Reds were scheduled to play another double header to make up for earlier lost games against the Yankees. I was in the stands at 5:00 p.m., directly behind home plate where logic dictates that a catcher would be sitting. There I had an excellent view of the plate and was able to watch in the first game as 8 Yankee runs scored as opposed to only 3 for the Reds. This is starting to suck!

But the real fun was in the second game when, as usual, the Yankees had the lead and had men on base. One of the Yankees got a single (I now understand why Boston Red Sox fans hate the real Yankees so badly) and the runner on second tried to score. The throw from the center fielder was dead on perfect. I mean it was a strike that would have made Willie Mays happy to have thrown.

The ball came in hard and fast and two inches off the ground. A perfect throw as the Yankee slid into home. The Reds catcher had the Yankee out by a foot and a half. Maybe more. It was perfect and a blind person would have called him out. Because he was.

However the umpire called him SAFE!!!

By this point in the game I had consumed four rather large glasses of beer that I had used to wash down two rather perfect bratwursts. I was feeling little pain and actually was feeling some disgust for the umpire who made that lousy call.

Instinctively in my alcohol induced state of euphoria, on seeing the umpire make this horrible call, I leaped to my feet (as much as four beers allows any leaping) and screamed BULLSHIT!!!! Because it was a bullshit call.

Imagine my surprise when, at the same instant that I yelled BULLSHIT, three other fans sitting near me (none of whom I knew) leaped to their feet at the same time and screamed BULLSHIT!

We could see it but the ump couldn't. I only wonder what the umpire thought when four people sitting away from each other leaped up and yelled the same advice to him at the same time!

In the two days following this game the Reds played Charlotte and beat them both games. These were away games so I wasn't in the stands. As I write this on Monday night they are leading in their current game. This is more evidence that its me in the stands causing them to lose.

Maybe I should get a job umpiring their games?

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