The Book of Mike

"This is no junior college. This is the notorious University of Miami.” -- Marlins starter Dontrelle Willis, after getting knocked around for six runs in 2 1/3 innings by the Canes.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

After the 54th Out

At this point, Doug Eddings is signaling a third strike, but he hasn't yet called the batter out.

It isn't the LCS in Chicago unless there's some memorable controversy. We got that last night after the third out in the bottom of the 9th inning when A.J. Pierzinski took first base on a phantom dropped third strike.

We'll be debating home plate umpire Doug Eddings' call and gestures for some time. Even to most Sox fans, Eddings' call was suspect. It seemed that he called the batter out, making a tag or a throw to first unnecessary. A.J., playing the game as he should, ran to first anyway and was rewarded for it, as that (apparently) wasn't Eddings' call.

Hopefully the Sox won't win this series in seven games. If they do, we'll never hear the end of this call. We may never hear the end of it anyway.

All things considered, last night's game was oddly umpired. Batters (from both sides) complained about called strikes throughout the game, particularly in the middle to later innings. The White Sox announcers even commented a few times in the 6th and 7th innings about how animated Eddings had become in making his strike calls and how he seemed to be taking pleasure in making the call for called third strikes. Umpires, good or bad, shouldn't become part of the game. Last night, even before the bottom of the 9th, they did. That's a shame - especially for a game of this magnitude.

But the Sox won, and I'm happy for that. Heading to Anaheim/LA with a split is pretty good. If the Sox can take two of three out West they'll be in good shape.


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