Games » Minnesota TwinsApr25
If you ever get a chance to watch a ballgame with former umpire Steve Palermo, take it. He’s funny, informative and has forgotten more baseball than I could ever learn in three lifetimes. He’s also nice.
I’ve been to the press box before, but it’s been years, and I felt like the new kid in class. I picked an empty seat lined up behind home plate, and just before the game started, Steve sat down next to me. I thought he was just being friendly until I looked down and saw the spot I’d taken had a name on it…you guessed it, Steve Palermo.
He couldn’t have been nicer about it, insisted I stay in his seat and talked baseball with me throughout the game.
It worked out so well, tomorrow I’m leaving my car in Mike Fannin’s parking spot.
Outstanding defensive plays…
David DeJesus made a sliding catch of a pop fly in short right near the line. That play had everyone cheering, but right before that, Jason Kendall’s block of a ball in the dirt with a runner on third saved a run, and if you look at the final score, the ballgame.
Not so outstanding defensive play…
Pop fly over by the Royals’ dugout: If you’ve been following these posts, by now you know pop flies drift back toward the field. There’s a chart called areas of pop fly responsibility. It lets the players know who has what area and if two players are in the same area, who is in charge.
The catcher has the area behind home plate, but once he begins to come up the line toward the dugouts, if the first or third baseman can get there, they should call him off.
He’s got the most difficult angle (nearly underneath), he’s wearing catcher’s gear (put some on and see how fast you can run), and he’s wearing one of two mitts allowed on the field (first and third). The catcher’s glove is not ideal for pop-ups — it’s designed for 98 mph fastballs.
Anyway, Kendall and Billy Butler got there about the same time, but Butler never took charge. Billy missed one the night before. No way of knowing if that played a part, but it looked like Kendall got hung out to dry on a tough one and took the error.
The butterfly effect…
In the eighth, Rupe gets two quick outs, but then gives up a single to Young in the 7 hole. He then goes on to walk the 8-hole hitter, Hardy and the pinch-hitter, Kubel, sent up in the 9 hole. Finally, he gets the leadoff man, Span.
So, no harm, no foul, right?
Would I bring it up if that were the case? By handing out free passes to the bottom of the order, he made sure Mauer, 3 hole, and Morneau, 4 hole, each got an extra at-bat. Mauer singled and Morneau drove him in with a double. The game ended with the tying run on second when Soria struck out Cuddyer and Thome.
Soria got out of a tough situation, but Rupe’s the one who put him there.