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Great night for Angel Pagan, but he did have a little help out there

May 20, 2010, 8:17 AM EST

Nyjer Morgan leaps.jpgAngel Pagan hit an inside-the-park homer in the fourth inning of last night’s Mets-Nats game, which you can see here. Then, in the fifth, he started off a triple play, which you can see here.

Before I say anything else, let me say this: great job by Pagan for (a) running like a mofo out of the box on the inside-the-parker; and (b) making a great catch on the triple play. What I’m about to say isn’t meant to take anything away from him.

But I’ll say it anyway: boo to Nyjer Morgan for misjudging the fly that turned into the home run. If he hadn’t and, if instead, he had played the carom, then Pagan would have had a double.  I’ve written before that I don’t, like many people, find inside-the-park home runs to be the most exciting play in baseball because they are so often the product of mistakes by the outfielders and many times aren’t even close plays (give me a clean triple any day). This one was still exciting — there was a play at the plate at least — but if Nyjer doesn’t misplay that ball, there’s no homer.

Also, boo to second base umpire Bob Davidson for not making anything close to a definitive call on Pagan’s catch that kicked off the triple play, thereby confusing the base runners. Yes, it’s the runners’ responsibility to make double damn sure that the ball drops before advancing, but on plays that close the ump has to make a better call than that.

And Mets fans: please, hold your “stop hating on the Mets” rebop. I’m not hating on them. Like I said, great plays by Pagan. But that doesn’t mean that Morgan and Davidson didn’t screw up.

  1. Ron - May 20, 2010 at 8:36 AM

    Craig, fair point about the 2nd base umpire not making a good enough call, but don’t they get credit for immediately getting together and talking about it, instead of just calling it and walking off?
    A lot of people complain about the mistakes the umpires makes. Seems like they should get some credit for doing what everyone bitches about them not doing. Of course, that particular part of it won’t be shown on the World Wide Leader at least 100,000 times, or have 1,000,000 words written about by anyone with a computer. There would be no contrversy in that.
    Also, Morgan didn’t make a good play, but where were the other outfielders? Morgan should be able to attempt a play like that with two other guys out there to back him up, as long as they don’t stand and watch the ball.

  2. Lee - May 20, 2010 at 8:38 AM

    Stop hating on the Mets!

  3. Craig Calcaterra - May 20, 2010 at 8:43 AM

    Very good point about Morgan’s backup on that play. The left and right fielders should have been closer.
    As for the umps, yes, I’m happy that they conferred and everything, but that’s one of those instances where the initial call matters, because the players are relying on it. I’m glad they got it right, but given that reliance there’s sometimes more to an umpire’s job to getting the play right.

  4. Professor Dave - May 20, 2010 at 8:51 AM

    I will never forget Prince Fielder’s inside-the-park HR. I can’t decide if it was the most awesome or least awesome baseball play I’ve ever seen.

  5. Fielding - May 20, 2010 at 9:00 AM

    If Pagan had the presence of mind, he could have made the triple play unassisted. He was pretty close to second when he (over)threw the ball, and could hasve tagged the base and runner.

  6. Benny Blanco - May 20, 2010 at 9:08 AM

    Give some credit to Morgan. They guy made a great effort and was pretty close to making a tremendous webgem. Thats the type of play Griffey used to make back in the 90’s.

  7. BC - May 20, 2010 at 9:39 AM

    All this and the Mets still lose the game. Bleh. We suck.

  8. Jonny5 - May 20, 2010 at 9:59 AM

    Ok, so Morgan miffed the catch, but damn this guy has more hustle than most ball players I’ve seen. A guy like that will make great plays all the time, I see him stealing 40 bags this season, which will equal how many runs by seasons end?? Also his speed is phenominal, I’m glad he quit the profession of Hockey, he something to watch on the diamond. Anyway, he misjudged the hit, he thought it was over the wall and was doing the little,”I tried to catch it above the wall hail mary play”. It’ll happen. In other words Craig, hold the Boos for the guys who deserve it. Like Big Poopie and Flat Burrell. Everyone has their bad day, and bad plays, but let’s just boo the guys having bad seasons, and bad months.

  9. Nick - May 20, 2010 at 11:41 AM

    The umps got the call right, but whose to say a triple play occurs if a call was made immediately? If it’s ruled a catch immediately, Morgan has a chance to return to 1st (especially with Pagan’s throw).

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