Watching major league ball games in our own neighborhood has been very interesting. Last night, we saw the very best, Gerrit Cole, retire the last Blue Jays 15 batters he faced. His designated catcher Kyle Higashiokga hit two homers to drive in all the runs needed in the Yankees 3-1 win. Read HERE and HERE.
It was the bottom of the ninth innings with two outs and two strikes on the batter that rubbed me the wrong way. The Jays had the tying run at the plate in Rowdy Tellez and the Yankees Adrolis Chapman was on in relief. Tellez was rung up by home plate umpire, the veteran Hunter Wendelstedt, on a pitch that was obviously several inches below the strike zone to end the game.
Wendelstedt appeared completely fooled by the pitch framing ability of Higgy as Yankee fans call him. We were surrounded by several hundred Yankees fans who screamed in excitement on the called third strike to end the game.
Just the night before, the Phillies appeared to catch a break when the home plate umpire called Alec Bohm safe at home even on a sacrifice fly which was the difference in the 7-6 Phillies win. Bohm appeared to not have tagged the plate. Even with replay, the play stood much to the frustration of the Atlanta Braves and their fans.
Unfortunately, replay does not apply to “balls and strikes”. I am a strong supporter of the automated umpire technology for calling “balls and strikes”. We expect to see how this works in the low A Southeast League this season, formally known as the Florida State League. (Baseball Betsy is frustrated that she won’t be able to heckle a machine.)
Major League baseball in our hometown has been exciting. We look forward to watching all three Phillies games against the Blue Jays from our seats just behind the Phillies’ dugout in Dunedin during the middle of May.