Tuesday, July 8, 2008

What a Difference a Day Makes...

Following the 3rd game of the Marlins-Rockies series, it felt as though things were starting to come apart. Our starting rotation, with Ryan Tucker and Mark Hendrickson, couldn't get out of the 4th inning of a game and was looking extremely hittable. The Marlins blew a 9-run lead, and closer Kevin Gregg blew consecutive saves. The Marlins fell to 3.5 games back and were falling fast.

Turn the page to game 4 on Sunday. Chris Volstad gets called up from Carolina and enters the game down 4-3. Two scoreless, well pitched innings later, the Marlins have the lead, Volstad goes on to get the win and is promptly inserted into the starting rotation. Kevin Gregg pitched a solid inning Sunday, albeit with a 5-run lead. We also learn that Josh Johnson will be joining Volstad in the starting five. Johnson gets the start Thursday, Volstad on Friday.

Now, we come to tonight's game in San Diego. Emerging staff ace Ricky Nolasco pitches an 8 inning gem, giving up just 5 hits and 1 run. Due to the way the batting order fell in the top of the 9th, Nolasco came up just an inning short of the Marlins first complete game in 264 games. Kevin Gregg comes in and retires the Padres in order, recording the save.

Just to touch on it, the umpiring call made on Hanley's potential RBI double in the 7th was questionable, at best, although if you were listening to the Padres radio crew, they saw it as "the crew coming together, and they got the call right." Even the Marlins crew thought it was the right call, but it was more of an issue of overturning the original call. No one had a better view than the 3rd base ump who made the call.

Anyways, we'll never know what was said in the umpire conference, or who said they saw what, but whether it was fair or foul turned out to be a non-issue, thanks to Nolasco and Gregg. Nolasco threw like the staff veteran he is (despite being just 25, he is currently the oldest starting pitcher on the Marlins). He bested Greg Maddux, who still has not won since his 350th win came May 10th. With the new rotation, hopes are high. And thanks to the floundering Phillies, the Marlins are now just 1.5 games back of the division lead.

What a difference a day makes...


Jorge Costales CPA said...


The 3rd base umpire called it fair and was then over-ruled. It was not clear if Joe West [2nd base] actually over-ruled it or just took the lead in announcing it as the head of the crew.

But I reiterate my point: A line-drive off the bat of a right-handed hitter which lands just inches foul 10 yards past the bag and then continues into foul ground against the stands, could not have been a foul ball.

If the ball had actually been foul, it would have had to hug the line all the way down the field.


ASponge said...

With it hooking, you're right. But as long as it never touches the ground, it goes by where it lands, not where it crossed the bag.

Jorge Costales CPA said...

Got it - I thought it was a judgment call but you're right, it never bounced.

Stanley C. said...

For all we know, the 3rd base ump coulda got in the huddle with the other guys and said "I'm not so sure I made the right call..." And yea, AS is right about the bounce.

And lucky enough, it turned out to be irrelevant.