I just got back from Game 5 of the ALCS. Because I was sitting in Section 406 I couldn't clearly see the location of John Lackey's 7th Inning 3-2 pitch to Posada, but it looked suspiciously like another in the series of biased ball/strike calls that we have been seeing. When I got home and saw the replay on MLB.com I nearly fell out of my chair. That damn call was scandalous! This is simply a continuation of Nick Green in Boston, Kazmir getting squeezed, missed pickoff calls, and the now infamous McClelland double out non-call.
Despite the coverage this horrible umpiring has been getting not only on Halos Heaven but in the MSM as well, the ridiculously bad calls continue to arise like herpes attacks on a middle-aged nymphomaniac. What can we as fans do about it? Some might say nothing. That we are helpless victims, left to stew in the juices of our justified anger.
Here on Halos Heaven our regular posters have spoken out about the travesty that is the umpiring of this ALCS. About Game 4 Downing Rules said "that game was a DEBACLE." I couldn't agree more. Big Bad, Vlad wrote "If this shit keeps up, we will have another 1919 on our hands." Again, right on the mark. I think these comments are useful in that they allow us to express and deal with our anger -- they can be cathartic. Far from being the "whining" that many Yankee fans (and some Angel fans as well) have called these kinds of responses, I think they are a sign of frustration and a feeling of being continually screwed by unethical men who wield a significant amount of power in their particular field of influence (mlb umpires).
In addition to being a form of catharsis these comments can hopefully serve to elevate the level of dialogue about professional sports officiating from drunken stadium cries of "get the shit out of your eyes Ump" to a serious discussion about video replay, fan participation and even ethics in business.
On this evening Angels Talk Terry Smith said , "I though that was a bad call by Fieldin Culbreth." For someone who generally avoids participating in discussion about the negative effects of bad umpiring this is saying alot. Fieldin Culbreth apparently thought the Lackey pitch was low and inside. Interestingly, it seems those two words could be used to respectively describe his moral standards and the situation leading to his on field behavior.