10/15/2012 07:13 pm ET Updated Dec 14, 2012

MLB Chops Down Chipper and the Braves

I was under the impression that replacement officials were being used in the
Nation Football League NOT in Major League Baseball. Yet in still the National
League Wildcard game between the Braves and Cardinals may have been decided by
one of the worst blown calls in the history of the MLB. The fact that playoff
games have extra umpires to ensure the integrity of competition only adds insult
to injury. As the Braves trailed 6-3 in the bottom of the eighth inning with two
men on and one out Shortstop Andrelton Simmons hit a pop up to shallow left
field causing miscommunication between Cardinals shortstop Peter Kozma and left
fielder Matt Holiday. The confusion between fielders actually led to the ball
falling in for a hit, which should have given the Braves bases loaded with one
out and six time All Star Brian McCann coming to the plate. In lieu of the
obvious base hit Left field Ump Sam Holbrook ruled the play an "Infield Fly"
sending the Atlanta faithful into a frenzy. Why is an "Infield Fly" being called
by an umpire in the outfield? Why was the call so delayed? How could anyone with
any knowledge of the game think that play was "routine"? In total disgust Braves
fans showered the field with debris causing a nineteen minute delay as the
incompetent umpires watched helplessly from the dugout. Even after nearly twenty
minutes of deliberation the correct call wasn't made, prompting manager Freddi
Gonzales to play the game under protest. The missed call may have cost the
Braves the game and ultimately their season as it eliminated from playoff

An umpire, or referee should never under any circumstances be the deciding
factor in a game. Whether its preseason, regular season, or post season and
especially not in a one game elimination scenario. Officials should be fully
committed to ensuring fair play in all contests but playoff games require even
closer observation due to the raised stakes. Its ridiculous to think a team of
professionals were unable to make such a routine call but I'm more disturbed by
the MLB's unwillingness to admit their mistake. Its a slap in the face to the
Braves organization and all its fans. Where's the integrity? Where's the
appreciation for Chipper Jones a nineteen year former MVP and World Series
Champion playing in his last post season? Releasing a statement ruling it a
"judgment call" is just disgusting! Despicable! Deplorable! I spit on you Major
League Baseball! Some four letter words come to mind but I'll keep this post
somewhat civil. Every team is entitled to twenty seven outs not twenty six,
there's no guarantee the Braves would've won had the correct call been made but
who to say they wouldn't have? Its a shame that the season and career of one of
the all time greats had to end on such a note. Chipper deserved better. His fans
deserved better. The game deserves better.