Orioles outfielder Steve Pearce skateboards to the ballpark

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As a 30-year-old journeyman trying to log 200 plate appearances in the majors for the first time this season Steve Pearce is someone to root for and the Orioles outfielder/designated hitter also has an interesting way of getting to Camden Yards for work each day.

“I had a big old truck last year … driving around in the city sometimes is a pain in the butt,” Pearce told Rich Dubroff of CSNBaltimore.com. So instead Pearce got “a souped-up electric skateboard” that he rides to the ballpark:

I love that thing. It’s comfortable. It’s cushioned. Great gas mileage. It’s electric. It’s not like a regular  skateboard. It’s got big old wheels on it. I don’t have to worry about a rock throwing me off of it. It’s durable. My dogs love it. They chase it. We have a church next to the house with a big old open lot. I get on the skateboard and they get some exercise.

Also tough not to root for a guy who frequently uses the phrase “big old” in conversation.

Umpire admits he blew the call that got Joe Maddon ejected last night

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Last night in the top of the eighth inning of the Dodgers-Cubs game, Curtis Granderson struck out. Or, at the very least, he should’ve. After the game, the umpire who said he didn’t admitted he screwed up.

While trying to squelch a Dodgers comeback, Wade Davis got Granderson into a 2-2 count. Davis threw his pitch, Granderson whiffed on it, it hit the dirt, and Willson Contreras applied the tag for the out. End of the inning, right? Wrong: Granderson argued to home plate umpire Jim Wolf that he made slight contact with the ball, Wolf, after conferring with the other umps agreed, and Granderson lived to see another pitch.

Before he’d see that pitch, Joe Maddon came out to argue the call and got so agitated about it all he was ejected for the second time in this series. He was right to argue:

It all ended up not mattering, of course, because Granderson struck out eventually anyway.

Normally such things end there, but after the game a reporter got to Wolf and Wolf did something umpires don’t often do: he admitted he blew the call:

It’s good that the bad call ended up not affecting anything. But the part of me who likes to stir up crap and watch chaos rule in baseball really kinda wishes that Granderson had hit a series-clinching homer right after that. At least as long as it didn’t result in Cubs fans burning Chicago to the ground.