It was quiet inside my house last night. My wife, my youngest daughter, and the dogs were asleep. My oldest daughter was texting in the chair across from me. I had the television on but the sound was low. I surfed the web on my laptop between twitter and yahoo sports. "I'm going upstairs to take a shower", is all I remember my oldest saying as she went the stairs. My attention turned to the news that 28 year old Detroit Tigers pitcher Armando Galarraga was three outs away from baseball's 21st perfect game ever, 3rd this season, and 2nd in the last four days. I flipped the tv from the Stanley Cup playoffs to ESPN. As he got the first two Cleveland Indians out, I put down the laptop and moved to the edge of the couch, just as I had done four days earlier when the Phillies Roy Halladay acheived this rare feat. Jason Donald weakly ground to first base the throw goes to the pitcher covering, Donald is at least one full step away from the bag and the umpire, 23 year veteran Jim Joyce, motions SAFE. I reacted no differently than millions of others watching this play. The umpire is a jerk. How can you miss that? Poor Armando Galarraga will hate you and his life forever. Tweet, tweet, tweet; I started participating in the #JimJoycePointOfView comedy skit on twitter. After a while something happened.
video of the blown call: http://mlb.mlb.com/video/play.jsp?content_id=8616789
I remembered my five year old was sleeping with her mom and I went to move her into her own bed. As she wrapped her arms and legs around me, her warmth reminded me of earlier today when I lectured her on being nicer to her grandmother and cousin. She had been over-tired and just had abit of a bad day. Part of my speech then was "it's ok to have a bad day, but you have to take responsibility for what you do and apologize and do better the next time." I started to feel less angry for Galarraga, Joyce, baseball, and anything not associated with me or my family,
I went back to the computer and read tweets and news stories that Joyce and Galarraga had talked, hugged, and Joyce had apologized. Galarrage remarked "no one's perfect." How ironic. On a night his perfection was taken away by another man's imperfection, the offended, Galarraga, was able to have perspective and class.
This morning I read this article: http://joeposnanski.si.com/2010/06/02/the-lesson-of-jim-joyce/
Grace is so difficult to have, understand, achieve, and maintain. As a parent, husband, son, and friend; it's important I try to understand what it is and what it means to others if I do have grace. What's really cool is through two things I love; my daughter and sports, I understood it a little better.