Monday, October 17, 2005

My Baseball Rant

One of my biggest pet peeves involves officials in sports who think they need to help determine the outcome of a key game. Whether it's a official at an NCAA or NFL game, throwing flags in the playoffs every down or, like last night, a MLB Umpire being a drama queen in the playoffs. I have said it before and I will probably have to say it again, all sports would be better off with fewer refs; as the fans in Houston yelled in the Bad News Bears movie, "Let them play".

Yes, my team lost last night and I'm bitter. But to watch your team lose, in part, because a bonehead umpire tries to involve himself in the game is really aggravating. After Manager Tony La Russa and then Jim Edmonds were thrown out, I was almost tossed out of my house by my wife last night for arguing with the television (I lost).

These athletes get paid to play the game; they play 162 games and to have an umpire, who is having a bad night, determine the outcome of a pivotal game is just plain stupid. Yes, you should not argue balls and strikes, but you should have the right to complain when the calls are not even close. If this were the NFL, Jim Edmonds' would have called for an instant replay to show the far-sighted umpire, Phil Cuzzi, just how bad his calls were.

It was 3 balls, 1 strike in the top of the 8th inning. As you can see from the image, the ball is up and way inside. The picture is taken off-center, so the ball is actually further inside than the picture shows. It was ball 4 and Cuzzi is a jerk and a drama queen who should go back to calling Little League games.

His actions and the reactions by the Cardinals may have squashed any dreams we fans had of winning the World Series for the first time since 1982 and erasing the embarrassment of last years loss to the Red Sox.