That one play alone was painful and frustrating for me and all Detroit Tigers fans alike.
Back in June 2010, a young Tigers pitcher named Armando Gallaraga stepped up to the mound against the Cleveland Indians.
And on that night, Gallaraga pitched a gem, going perfect through nine and two-thirds innings. This would lead up to an at-bat against Cleveland utility player Jason Donald.
Donald would hit a groundball to the first base side, and then with the pitcher’s foot on the base, umpire Jim Joyce… called it safe.
Yeah… it wasn’t. And even Donald was shocked that he was safe if you look closely.
After Joyce gets berated by then-manager Jim Leyland and players, Gallaraga would later get the 28th out to win the game 3-0.
What happened after that was that Joyce did admit he made a mistake on the call, stating that he ‘kicked the shit out of it.’ However, no hard feelings were made as both the pitcher and the emotional umpire exchanged lineup cards the next day.
Plus, even though he didn’t get the actual perfect game, Gallaraga would be rewarded a brand new car as a result of it.
I hope he enjoyed that car that he was awarded for his efforts on the pitching mound.
Also I would like to give props once again to Joyce for owning up to his mistake as well. A lot of MLB umpires nowadays would let it slide and think nobody would notice if they made a similar mistake. It takes guts for him to do it, I have tons of respect for Joyce for that.