The blown call during last night's game got a lot of deserved attention. Something that seems so obviously to fix yet baseball drags its collective feet. On Twitter, I took a bunch of heat for coming out (going out of my way?) to say blown calls don't really bother me. When Encarnacion was called out at the plate, I was disappointed that the rally fizzled and we all missed a chance to see Papelbon suffer.
When the gifs and images showing EE in fact did "tag" the plate with his right leg1, my reaction didn't really change. I simply cannot muster too much ire for blown calls and human error.
I freely admit I don't watch baseball the same way now as I did years ago. It doesn't have as much to do with my job as it does the way baseball re-introduced itself to my life.
Life in its very early twenties took me away from baseball in terms of following closely and obsessively. Work life brought me back. The day-to-day, the constant presence from April to September. Then I found the blogosphere and it was over. An opportunity to learn and think and debate and laugh and do all kinds of things adult working life goes out of its way to discourage. And here we are today.
The destination matters but so does the journey. The outcome of any given game of the 162 games a year I watch (give or take many) means a little less. It's all about the moments, the things I remember and take away that separate a random game against the Red Sox in July from the other 60 games against the Red Sox in the last five years.
Do you think you'll remember the score of Roy Halladay's return to Toronto? Do you think you'll remember — without straining — who started for the Jays or the inconsistent strike zone in five years?
I'm pretty damn sure you'll remember Jose Bautista hitting that home run.
It's a moment like that which makes two decades of 80-win seasons easy to take. Christ, being a sports fan isn't hard, nor is it tortuous. It's amazing. That Jays fans have this incredible pool of talented and funny people to bounce ideas off and debate with is something I wouldn't trade for anything.
Again: forgive me for not griping about the blown call or Fenway's bandbox dimensions or rush hour traffic or the weather. Some of these things will be taken care of in time, until then I leave my panties unbunched.
If that makes me dispassionate or affected, so be it. I certainly don't feel dispassionate when things within control of the Jays like personnel decisions, lineup construction and mancrush acquisitions drive me up the wall or keep me awake at night. The (error-based) outcome of one game of one hundred and sixty-two in a rebuilding season? It won't have the same impact. Sorry.
1 - EE touching home plate with his right leg seems a wholly coincidental action to me, caused by spinning off Tek's blocking leg. The ump clearly anticipated the play and focused more on EE's left leg, where the tag eventually came. Not saying it's right, just trying to understand how or why this ump blew this call.