The Travesty

2010 has already been an incredible season, especially in the perfect game department. There had only been 18 in the history of baseball, but now we have witnessed three of them – first by Dallas Braden, then by Roy Halladay, and finally, tonight, Armando Galarraga joined the club.

27 up, 27 down. It’s an exclusive club for a reason: it’s almost impossible to do. You never know what might happen. A lucky bounce here or there, a blown call by an umpire…

Okay, fine, the record books won’t let us pretend that the Travesty of Jim Joyce didn’t happen. The man blew a pretty easy call that cost Galarraga his spot in history. There’s simply no defending him. He screwed up, really badly, in the most important moment of his career.

He’s human. Humans make mistakes. And it’s why the strengths and weaknesses of one single man should never determine the outcome of such a play. There is no argument against instant replay. Any chance the purists had for a “sanctity of the game” argument just went out the window. Armando Galarraga threw a perfect game, but he won’t get credit for it because one umpire screwed up, when 30 seconds of watching a replay on a monitor would have allowed him to correct his call.

This is ridiculous. Replay. Now.

Until then, I suggest MLB invoke “the best interest of the game” and hold a joint press conference with Joyce where everyone involved admits that the call was wrong, and they simply overturn the call and officially credit Galarraga with a perfect game. I don’t care about precedent. This will never happen again. It’s the right thing to do.

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Dave is the Managing Editor of FanGraphs.

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