I would like to first off thank the inventor of DVR. It really is one of the best inventions ever. It allows you to watch shows, programs on sporting events on your time.
Last night I used this wonderful invention to record Game Three of the Philadelphia Phillies-Colorado Rockies series last night. With the game starting at 10:00 ET, there was no way I was staying up to watch this game.
I watched the first four innings last night, woke up this morning, and watched the remaining five innings. Truly fantastic.
While DVR allows you to watch everything you want to see, it allows you to watch things you have no interest in seeing during the show, program, or sporting event. Things like–more awful, hideous, terrible, inexcusable umpiring.
What the heck is going on with the umpiring during these playoffs? It has been truly terrible. I think the home plate umpiring has been okay. For the most part, the home plate umpires have been consistent with their umpiring
But the issue is–they are missing obvious calls. And it is happening time and time again throughout these playoffs. As much as I would hate to see all forms of instant replay in baseball, I really think Bud Selig and his band of merry owners are going to have to start to give it some serious consideration moving forward.
Last night was a perfect example of the umpires missing the obvious calls. In the bottom of the ninth, with the game tied at five, Chase Utley came to the plate with one out and Jimmy Rollins on second.
Utley hit a ball that went off his leg in the batter’s box and then rolled into fair territory. Utley was able to beat the ball out for an infield single.
However, not only did the ball hit him in the batter’s box which is a foul ball, but Utley was out at first base as well. Not did the umpires get the call wrong once, but they compounded the issue by getting the call wrong a second time.
Two terrible calls on the same play. Rollins advanced to third on the play and then the Phillies took advantage of the situation when Ryan Howard hit a sac fly to give the Phillies the lead.
I hate to harp on bad umpiring because it really overshadowed what was a really good game. And despite this game being played in 30 degree weather, it really was a good game.
In a back-and-forth game, the difference at the end was the backend of the Phillies bullpen. Ryan Madson, Chad Durbin, and Brad Lidge didn’t allow a hit for the last three innings and really shut the Rockies down.
With both starters being completely useless—JA Happ and Jason Hammel—you knew this game was not only going to come down to the underbelly of the bullpens, but the backend as well.
Madson, Durbin, and yes, Lidge all got the job done. And let’s give somewhat credit to Lidge. I don’t care how much of a Philly homer you are, when Lidge walked Carlos Gonzalez (the best player so far in this series on either team), you had to being thinking here we go again.
Then he walked Todd Helton with two outs and then about four million Phillies fans said, “I can’t watch right now.” But Lidge got his act together and managed to get Troy Tulowitzki to pop out to end the game.
I said somewhat credit earlier because Lidge really threw a hanger to Tulowitzki. That last pitch was made to be hit 450 feet. Tulowitzki just missed it.
But the bottom line is this–one inning, no runs, no hits, and a save for Lidge in a tight game. The Phillies and their fans aren’t interested in style points, they are interested in results.
The result was a 6-5 Phillies win and a 2-1 advantage in the series.
Game Four is tonight at 6:07 ET. Charlie Manuel should be thanking Mother Nature for the rest of his life. Because of the snow out, Manuel can come back with Cliff Lee tonight and if necessary, Cole Hammels tomorrow.
I am convinced Manuel had no idea who he was going to start in Game Four. Now he gets to come back with Lee. Not a bad deal for the Phillies.