“Take Time For Paradise…

“Take Time For Paradise” according to A Bart Giamatti, erstwhile Commissioner of Baseball.

Down the Line at SafeCo Field

Here is a view of SafeCo Field from the far right field. When I go to a ballpark I like to walk around the perimeter to see what I can see from wherever I am. It seems clear from this picture that the foul pole is really the “fair” pole in that it is in fair territory, so that if a ball strikes the pole it is a fair ball.

Because this is not so easy to see from home plate or the infield where the umpires usually hang out, they can, if they so desire, get help from the TV replays. I wonder if they will ever seek help on balls and strikes.

There are any number of peculiar calls from behind home plate. This calling of balls and strikes is not easy. The problem is that every umpire has his own idea of what constitutes the strike zone. And so the zone changes every day.

I remember when the TV people first started showing what might be the electronic strike zone. Tom Glavine was a very effective pitcher because he could throw a ball between 6 to 8 inches off the outside corner of the plate, which most umpires consistently called strikes. For most batters, balls out there are almost unhitable. When the umpires one year decided they wouldn’t call those strikes any more poor Tommy Glavine suffered a devastating loss of pitching skill.