A perfect game is one of the most thrilling things that can happen in baseball. They have been few and far between throughout the illustrious history of America’s pastime. Recently, Max Scherzer of the Washington Nationals had a perfect game through 8 2/3 innings. With only one out remaining, pinch hitter Jose Tabata of the Pittsburgh Pirates was hit by Scherzer, which ultimately ended the perfect game. Many fans, writers, and analysts were outraged by the fact that Tabata didn’t attempt to get out of the way. Was that outrage justified? I don’t think so.
As a hitter in the game of baseball, you train, you practice, and you work to get on base, by any means necessary. And that is what Tabata did. It was unfortunate that it ended Scherzer’s perfect game, but he did what a hitter was supposed to do. You can’t let the situation and score of a game dictate your approach at the plate. Brandon McCarthy, pitcher for the Los Angeles Dodgers said it best on Twitter, “Looked like a totally normal reaction from a hitter to an inside breaking ball – why all the hate?” Personally, I couldn’t agree more.
Scherzer himself even gave Tabata props saying, “I have no qualms about it, that’s just baseball. He did what he needed to do. Kudos to him actually.”
It was unfortunate that Scherzer lost his perfect game, but he still ended up throwing a no hitter, another event in baseball that isn’t seen very often. I don’t see how you can blame the loss of a perfect game on a hitter who got on base. If the home plate umpire thought Tabata didn’t attempt to get out of the way, then the umpire would’ve said so. The pitch got away from Scherzer and it just happened at a bad time. But, that doesn’t take anything away from his outstanding start. He was dominant, but just one bad pitch ruined his chances of a perfect game. And that is what makes throwing a perfect game so hard to accomplish.
Cody Crandall is an intern at the Jamestown Gazette. To read more of his insights, commentaries, and news about the world of sports and the Jamestown Jammers, visit www.jamestowngazette. com. The Jamestown Gazette is proud to present our county’s most creative and original writers for your enjoyment and enlightenment.