Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Public Enemy: Jim Joyce

As Joe Posnanski eloquently alluded to after Roy Halladay's perfect game on Saturday, perfect games and near-perfect games are all the rage.

Tiger fans should be celebrating the franchise's first ever perfect game tonight, as Armando Galarraga got hosed on the 27th batter he faced.

From the game recap:
DETROIT (AP)—Armando Galarraga of the Detroit Tigers lost his bid for a perfect game Wednesday night with two outs in the ninth inning on a disputed call at first base. Replays appeared to show Cleveland hitter Jason Donald was out.

Tigers manager Jim Leyland immediately argued the call with first base umpire Jim Joyce, and was joined by several Detroit players who surrounded the ump after the Tigers beat the Indians 3-0.

-snip-

Donald hit a bouncer that first baseman Miguel Cabrera cleanly fielded to his right. He took his time and made an accurate throw to Galarraga covering the bag.

The ball appeared to be in Galarraga’s glove just before Donald made it to first base, replays indicated. Galarraga smiled, held up his glove hand and started to make an out call with his right hand.

But Joyce, a veteran umpire, made an emphatic safe call and Comerica Park went silent in disbelief. A couple of Tigers put their hands to their heads.

Galarraga merely smiled and went back to work as the crowd started to boo. Cabrera continued to argue the call as Galarraga quickly retired Trevor Crowe for the one-hit shutout.

Joyce faced a group of hostile Tigers—led by Leyland—between the pitching mound and home plate after the final out and was booed lustily by the crowd of 17,738 as he walked off the field.
Congratulations, Jim Joyce. You just became our least favorite official this side of the NBA.

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