The Nationals were almost able to pull off a miracle 9th inning comeback against Roy Halladay last night, after being completely stifled by him through the first 8 frames. The saddest part is that they really had a chance to get the game to extra innings, but home plate umpire Alan Porter decided his toes were cold and he wanted to get home. He widened the strike zone just enough for the last 2 batters to make sure the rally ended with the Nats still trailing by one. The final pitch to Pudge was especially troubling. Perhaps Porter wanted to ensure that Halladay got a complete game victory, which I’m sure he thinks is “good for baseball”. Hopefully that wasn’t the case, but he also knew that if Halladay walked someone or gave up one more hit, they’d bring in a new pitcher, which would extend the game by at least another 10 minutes. Mr. Porter, the Nats fans in attendance were really disappointed in you.
As for Stairs’ strikeout, he is getting a lot of heat for not swinging the bat, but I stand behind him. He’s not one of the greatest pinch hitters in history for nothing. He was looking for a certain pitch to hit and he didn’t get it. If he went up there hacking at every offering, he would not be the player that he is. I’m cutting him some slack on that one.