Jim Joyce wasn't the only one who blew a call last night

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Ryan Langerhans scores.jpgQuestion to all of you — and there are a lot of you — who want Bud Selig to step in, change Jim Joyce’s call and award Armando Galarraga a perfect game:  do you want Bud to change the outcome of the Mariners-Twins game too? Because that one ended on a blown call as well.

The scene: tenth inning, two on, two out, Ichiro at the plate. He lines one up the middle and Twins second baseman Matt Tolbert makes a diving stop and flips it to J.J. Hardy. The call by second base umpire Dale Scott is that base runner Josh Wilson was  “safe,” thereby allowing Ryan Langerhans comes around to score the game-winning run.

The only problem? He was pretty clearly out.

Of course, we have no replay on such calls, so it couldn’t be fixed.  But what we do have is a groundswell of opinion, apparently, that Bud Selig can and should retroactively overrule on-the-field calls and change outcomes.

How about this one?  It was a game-ender. There was no subsequent activity that would preclude a do-over.  The Twins and M’s could simply resume this game at the top of the 10th inning before their next matchup.  It would be easy. Indeed, there are multiple games every year in which Bud Selig — whose wisdom and judgment no man has ever doubted — could come in and fix like King freakin’ Solomon.

The answer to me seems clear: implement replay as soon as possible, but let us not get into the messy business of having an eminently flawed Commissioner of Baseball wading into game outcomes the next morning.  To do so would invite mischief and madness and God knows we already have enough of that.

Report: Pirates to convert JB Shuck into two-way player

JB Shuck
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Rob Biertempfel of The Athletic reports that the Pirates have decided to convert outfielder JB Shuck into a two-way player. Recent comments relayed from the club’s director of player development, Larry Broadway, indicated that the outfielder would be coached in developing his pitching skills while working at Triple-A Indianapolis.

Per Broadway, the change would be enacted to help the veteran outfielder develop some much-needed versatility in the majors, where he’s only ever been limited to outfield and DH responsibilities. Well, except for the two games in which he pitched an inning of relief: once, against the Nationals in a blowout 11-4 loss in 2016, then in a similarly painful loss to the Diamondbacks this past April. During the latter outing, he finished the game with a 13-pitch ninth inning after allowing just one hit and one walk.

Add to that one minor-league outing in 2012, and the 31-year-old Shuck has pitched just three times over the course of his 12-season career in pro ball. While he has three years of experience on the mound from his college days, he’ll need quite a bit of preparation to handle the kind of workload expected from a two-way outfielder/reliever: 20+ innings pitched over a season and 20+ games played as a designated hitter or position player.

Still, his lack of experience doesn’t seem to faze Broadway, at least not this early in the process. There’s no word yet on how soon Shuck would be expected to debut his new skillset on a major-league level.