Baseball Toaster Bad Altitude
2005-10-12 21:34
by Mark T.R. Donohue

The White Sox beat the Angels, 2-1 tonight on one of the weirdest calls you'll ever see in a postseason game. I was just talking to a friend today about how there are some people who only pay attention to baseball when they go to games and during the playoffs. How many of these people do you suppose knew that in order for a strikeout to "count" the catcher has to catch the pitch on the fly? I understand the rule, but even after watching the replay multiple times I have no opinion as to whether Josh Paul really picked the Kelvim Escobar splitter off the ground or not. If it bounced, it must have been right into his glove, or else he trapped it perfectly.

It appears as if the home plate umpire signaled twice -- once to call the pitch a strike, and once to indicate that the ball was still live and A.J. Pierzynski wasn't out until tagged or forced at first. Paul sure seemed certain that the inning was over, as he rolled the ball back up to the mound! Heads-up play by the White Sox catcher to run down to first when the ump signaled for him to do so. I hope in all the debate over this play no one forgets how beautifully starters Mark Buehrle and Jarrod Washburn pitched. Buehrle went nine and had the game gone into extra innings, I think Ozzie Guillen would have had trouble getting him off the mound for the tenth. Washburn only threw 4 2/3 but he was recovering from strep throat and to only allow four hits and one run is pretty good, I think. Escobar, until allowing the winning run in the bottom of the ninth, was great. He struck out five. But the last one will haunt him, Paul, Mike Scioscia, and the Angels all offseason if they don't win the series.

I didn't see any of the NLCS game, but it looks like reports of Chris Carpenter's demise were greatly exaggerated. Likewise all the stories about Andy Pettitte's playoff invulnerability. Tomorrow is a good night for the AL travel day because Mark Mulder and Roy Oswalt are facing off. What will happen next?

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