Detroit Tigers pitcher Armando Galarraga. Photo courtesy customauthenticjerseys.com.
Last night, Detroit Tigers pitcher Armando Galarraga was on the brink of the 3rd perfect game this season, but his bid was derailed by one Jim Joyce. A perfect game is one of the rarest feats in baseball, and this season there have already been two (Oakland's Dallas Braden against Tampa on May 9 and Philadelphia's Roy Halladay against Florida on May 29). Last night, with two out in the bottom of the 9th, one batter away from the perfecto, Galarraga pitched to Jason Donald and made the out at 1st, but umpire Jim Joyce called Donald safe, spoiling the perfect game. Video replays clearly showed Galarraga had Donald out at 1st.
There has been a lot of debate as to whether or not instant replay should be used in baseball. Currently, it is only selectively used on home run calls but it should be expanded to safe/out calls on the basepaths. With expanded instant replay, calls like the one last night will happen less and umpires like Joyce won't have to deal with the public backlash like he and his wife have today (he's behind home plate in today's Tigers-Indians game).