I hope everyone saw Joe Nathan's 300th save tonight? If you didn't, I'd like to sum it up in one word: wow.
Not trying to discredit him for becoming the 24th player in major league history to reach the milestone, but the pitch that put his record in the books was at least six inches off the plate and practically in the dirt.
Was the umpire the only person in the world that did not see this? Even fans behind the plate couldn't believe the call. And this includes both Nathan himself and catcher A.J. Pierzynski.
Joe Maddon has every right in the world to be as angry as he was. If you can read lips, I'm sure you saw him say some very choice words to home plate umpire Marty Foster.
I think Maddon said it best in the tweet he posted right after the game:
That can't happen in a major league game.— Joe Maddon (@RaysJoeMaddon) April 9, 2013
Even the Texas Rangers had some interesting things to say about the odd ending:
Albeit a bizarre final out, congrats to @joenathan36 on his 300th career save!— Texas Rangers (@Rangers) April 9, 2013
Just take a look for yourself:
If you're an avid baseball fan like I am, I think you would agree with me when I say that even though Nathan would have eventually reached 300 saves, this is not the way it should have gone down in the books.
I've always been a fan of Nathan ever since he received his first save in 1999 by striking out Jeff Bagwell.
He went from being a starter, to the long reliever, to a setup man and then finally a closer where he excelled ever since taking the reins.
But does he deserve to be honored tonight for receiving his 300th save and becoming 22nd on the all-time list of save leaders with such an obviously bad pitch?
Of course he does. He deserves every moment of it and should be proud of his accomplishment.
This is baseball and crazier things have happened. Do I even need to mention Jim Joyce's horrendous call that caused Armando Galarraga to lose his bid at becoming the 21st player in major league history to throw a perfect game?
Hats off to Nathan and his accomplishment. I mean that as a fan of the game and of the player himself.
However, if you saw his reaction to the call and saw the words that most likely came out of his mouth, I still think there's only one word to sum up tonight's game: wow.