It’s a Lot Easier to Be a Great Closer When the Strikezone Is Six Inches Wider

Here are two pitches from Mariano Rivera to Jay Payton and then Nick Markakis in key situations — 1-2 count, two outs, runner on base, down by one — during yesterday’s loss to the Yankees. Let’s play a little game called “guess whether the ump called these balls or strikes.” Keep in mind that the edge of the strikezone is the end of the plate, not the white line of the batter’s box.

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If you guessed strike to both, then you’re a big winner. I don’t have any prizes to offer you, other than a can full of fuel to power your Yankee hate.

13 thoughts on “It’s a Lot Easier to Be a Great Closer When the Strikezone Is Six Inches Wider”

  1. I hate to be that guy with the conspiracy theory…

    but isn’t this a little bit fishy that the Yankees are getting favorable calls while they are on life support before the playoffs?

    I bet Bud Selig (and the ratings) would be happy if they made it in.

  2. Shit, Sarah broke out the one line of defense that simply cannot be argued. I am, indeed, a “hater.” That doesn’t mean those pitches weren’t half-a-foot off the plate.

  3. The Markakis one was especially egregious as Rivera had just walked Roberts, and Roberts had stolen 2nd and taken 3rd on the throw. Plus, Markakis is a beast and that ball was half-a-foot outside.

  4. Keep in mind that the edge of the strikezone is the end of the plate, not the white line of the batter’s box.

    Any baseball post with a sentence like that never ends well.

  5. Isn’t fishy that the Orioles own 90% of another team’s television rights? Since they are unwilling to compete on a level playing field in their region and because of their efforts to kill the Nationals they don’t deserve a single break. The Orioles are the worst franchise in baseball if not all of sports.

  6. Watched the game on MASN and props should go to Jim Palmer who was ripping the umpire the whole game for having an awful strike zone and really got heated after the two calls you show above.

  7. lolol the orioles are a great franchise…don’t be mad that the Nats suck. plus, who cares if masn is owned by the orioles… I dont have a hard time finding either game on TV.

    ps: I live in NOVA and drive to bmore to go O’s games. I avoid the shitty nats stadium like a plague. Not only is it quicker to go to bmore cause of the traffic, it’s a nicer stadium, and a better team.

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