Two games into this Division Series, there have already been two controversial calls. There was the catch/non-catch on Wednesday, and the 1-2 pitch to Lance Berkman on Thursday. This is all coming one year after the Joe Mauer non-double in last year’s Division Series between these two teams.
“I think you could look at calls and say, you know, during the course of 150 pitches thrown on each side, that pitchers are going to get some strikes and maybe they don’t get a strike,” Joe Girardi said. “I mean, that’s going to happen. I mean, these umpires aren’t robots and they don’t have X-ray vision. There are pitches that sometimes we think are strikes and we don’t get them, and that’s part of the game, and you have to be able to overcome those things.”
I'm not defending umpires. Let's be clear about that. There's no denying how terrible the umpires have been this October, but this is nothing new. Umpires in this league have been awful for years now, regular season, postseason, spring training, whenever. The bottom line is that they suck, for everyone, but like a good friend reminded me today, the difference in this series is that one team has let those umpiring blunders hurt them, while the other hasn't. That's one of the main reasons the Yankees are up 2-0 and the Twins are sitting in their hotel rooms wondering how they're going to beat them.
The umpires aren't going to get better over night, so expect more mistakes as the playoffs continue. I just hope the Yankees are either on the right side of those wrong decisions or they handle whatever garbage comes their way. Luckily, they have so far.