Blog Entry

Jim Joyce's road from October

Posted on: January 28, 2011 7:14 pm
Edited on: January 30, 2011 8:36 pm

It's been a process for umpire Jim Joyce, moving from the mental exhaustion of the 2010 season and the Armando Galarraga Game last June to the point where now he's anticipating this spring training more than any recent camp.

What Kay Joyce most has noticed about her husband of 28 years is that he was very quiet for the first month or so after he returned home last October.

"Very, very quiet," Kay says. "I got him to go to Home Depot once, and four different people came up to him.

"I thought, 'Oh, now I know why.' It's all good, but. ..."

But the guy she noticed following her husband around a grocery store one day, up and down multiple aisles, she wasn't sure that would be good.

Turned out, though, it was simply the store manager.

"He just wanted to shake Jim's hand," she says.

Yes, it's been strange the way a man working in a profession in which the perfect day is to go unnoticed has been, well, regularly noticed.

"It has turned into a phenomenon," Jim Joyce says. "We're not perfect. We're not perfect people. I just happened to be imperfect at the wrong time."

Though he's intent on moving past 2010, two of the items he's kept from last summer are way cool: Baggage tags that were on his luggage when he traveled from Detroit to Philadelphia after the Galarraga game on which unidentified handlers scribbled personal notes.

One one tag was written, "You gave your best. God bless. (signed) DTW baggage"

On the other: "We are all human. Good luck. (signed) DTW."

"That was a shock to me," Joyce says. "So many people have been supportive. I couldn't be more happy that it still is a positive."

Likes: Not surprising, the notes on those baggage tags. As someone who hails from that area -- about 30 minutes north of Joyce's hometown of Toledo, Ohio -- the spirit of the good Midwestern people remains with me to this day. Joyce and I discussed that Friday. "They talk about Southern hospitality," he says. "It's definitely a Midwest thing, too, supporting a Midwesterner." ... Speaking of which, great news that Bob Seger and the Silver Bullet Band will tour beginning in March. Rock and roll never forgets, baby. ... Keith Richards' autobiography "Life" is a great read. Loved it. ... Tyler Kepner's New York Times piece on Gil Meche retiring and leaving $12 million on the table the other day. ... If you're looking for a good movie this weekend, check out The King's Speech. Outstanding. Great story, and what acting from Colin Firth and Geoffrey Rush.

Get well soon, Jimmy Buffett. Here's the tale from the doc who tended to him.

Rock 'N' Roll Lyric of the Day:

"I've got fevered dreams
"Mighty plans
"Need a black top road
"I need a wheel in my hands
"So long Arizona
"So long desert sands
"I need to face the promise
"Of the promised land"

-- Bob Seger, Face the Promise


Since: Aug 19, 2006
Posted on: January 29, 2011 4:37 pm

Jim Joyce's road from October

instant reply, coaches challenges, etc, fixes all this!  wake up baseball!  an archaic boring game that is falling farther and farther behind the times.

Since: Dec 29, 2006
Posted on: January 29, 2011 4:10 pm

Jim Joyce's road from October

I will admit that he showed contriteness the next day. But if you watch any video of the manager's attempt to argue the case, he got belligerent. He wouldn't even ask any of the other three umpirest what they saw. And what about those three? Should we feel they were bozos because they did nothing? There wasn't anything else going on. You can't tell me they weren't watching the play at first base themselves. Not one of them had the guts to approach Joyce and tell him he got it wrong. In some ways I can make a case for Joyce. He blew it. But I have problems with his crew. Gutless. In some ways they are the bigger culprits in the issue because they did nothing.

Since: Dec 27, 2007
Posted on: January 29, 2011 1:34 pm

Jim Joyce's road from October

His call was awful. The league should have reversed it because it was so obvious. We are talking about a perfect game. Joyce should feel regret. He was out of position and blew the biggest call of the season and maybe his career. He Scott Norwooded it.

That being said, he showed class in admitting it and regretting it. I don't know too many umpires/refs in any sport who would have gone to the lengths he did. Most are arrogant jerks. Kudos to him for being accountable and noble.

This is yet another example of the cowardice of Selig and his MLB minions. They have consistently done the wrong thing over-and-over again. He's the Jimmy Carter of MLB minus the house building.

Bravo to Joyce and Galarraga for displaying class and humanity. A pox on Selig's house for being a coward.

Since: Dec 29, 2006
Posted on: January 29, 2011 1:04 am

Jim Joyce's road from October

Selig did baseball and Joyce no favor when he let the call stand.  Normally a commissioner would have to do so because in practically all instances, you couldn't be sure how the call affected the rest of the game. But remember, in this instance it was the last out of the game, so to change the call only removes the next ab from the ledger. The pitcher has his perfect game, the majors have a new deserved record, and Joyce is off the hook. No matter how it appears on the surface, he still will be remembered for his atrochious call. More than that, he will remember it himself and that will be bitter because it is not just a missed call, one of many he has made and will make because it is the nature of the beast. Selig could show some compassion. He could show that he is a discerning commissioner and not just a robotic one. The truth is if I were commissioner, I would have overturned the call in a heartbeat. And then told the world the only way it ever happens again is if the exact same scenario happens again. Otherwise the game will have to live with its bad calls as it has and always will. And when I get the flak I expect to get, I will tell them all point blank. I did it for Mr. Joyce. No man should suffer depriving a another man of what he justifiably earned, and have to live with that stain, when he really shouldn't have to live with it.

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