Pittsburgh Legal Back Talk

Legal topics of interest to lawyers and consumers with a Pittsburgh and Western Pennsylvania focus.

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Posted By Cliff Tuttle | June 7, 2010

No. 452

By now, every American has heard the fascinating story.  Detroit Tigers’ pitcher Armando Galarraga pitches a perfect game, except for a call at first base with two out in the bottom of the ninth, which the replays show was clearly wrong and the umpire himself emphatically admits it immediately.  Then, Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig refuses to reverse the call, leading to a chorus of boos and catcalls like the one that appeared on the editorial page of the Post Gazette on Sunday, June 6.

The PG , like every other media outlet we’ve heard, said that the Tigers’ ace was robbed of a sterling moment. They are all wrong.

Everybody in America knows Mr. Galarraga pitched a perfect game. Everybody knows that he is wrongfully being deprived of the honor of having his name subscribed in the record book with the select number of pitchers who have recorded this signal achievement. There have been only 21 in the entire history of major league baseball.

But, perhaps you heard that two other perfect games were thrown last month. Amazing — three in one month!  Now, tell me who the other two pitchers were.

I thought so. I don’t know either.  I heard their names on the news and quickly forgot.  And so, most likely, did 99% of the people who don’t live in the cities involved.  And that’s the point.

We remember Galarraga and we don’t remember the others whose perfect games were recorded without incident.

Meanwhile, Mr. Galarraga is justly praised from all quarters for his sportsmanship and even awarded a $52,000.00 sports car by General Motors.  Sportswriters are already talking about the Hall of Fame. I’ll bet you a month of breakfasts that before the month is over he’ll be posing with the President in the Rose Garden.

This reminds me of another great pitcher who actually failed to pitch a perfect game. One summer night in 1959, Harvey Haddix pitched twelve perfect innings and lost the game in the 13th.  They haven’t stopped talking about it in Pittsburgh ever since.

I’d take it Galarraga’s way.



CLIFF TUTTLE has been a Pennsylvania lawyer for over 45 years and (inter alia) is a real estate litigator and legal writer. The posts in this blog are intended to provide general information about legal topics of interest to lawyers and consumers with a Pittsburgh and Western Pennsylvania focus. However, this information does not constitute legal advice and there is no lawyer-client relationship created when you read this blog. You are encouraged to leave comments but be aware that posted comments can be read by others. If you wish to contact me in privacy, please use the Contact Form located immediately below this message. I will reply promptly and in strict confidence.

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