On Wednesday night, history was made, but not in the way two individuals would have liked. The Detroit Tigers were hosting the Cleveland Indians and the Tigers' pitcher, Armando Galarraga had to get one more out in the ninth inning to complete the 21st perfect game in major league history. He had faced 26 batters to this point and gotten 26 outs. Amazing stuff.
He pitched to Jason Donald who grounded to first baseman Miguel Cabrera who then tossed it to Galarraga who rushed over to cover first base. Jim Joyce, (who was born in my home town of Toledo) the first-base umpire called the runner safe when replays showed he was clearly out.
Being a lifelong Tigers fan, I was furious when I saw this. I was amazed though at Galarraga's reaction. He just smiled. Then the next day I was even more amazed at the graciousness, humility and class shown by both Galarraga and Joyce (I ENCOURAGE YOU TO WATCH THE ABOVE VIDEO - IT IS A MUST SEE!).
Armando Galarraga comes out to present the lineup card (a job typically done by the manager of the team) to Jim Joyce who is the home plate umpire. Joyce is totally choked up with emotion because he knew that he had made a mistake and cost this young pitcher a place in history. He is totally undone by this and looks totally humbled. And then there is Galarraga, who could be very bitter and angry, supporting this broken man with great compassion.
Total class in action from both of these guys. Totally amazing and beautiful to see!