by Garret Kramer
Well, the umpire missed the call! And in the aftermath of the near perfect night for the Detroit Tigers, we have all heard a clamoring of sentiment about what should be done about it. In a frenzied pitch, everyone from sports talk hosts, to athletes, even to public officials, have an opinion. Many are calling for instant replay. Some are insisting that the call should be overturned and a perfect game be awarded to Armando Galarraga and his teammates. This morning, I even heard a very astute Jay Bilas (ESPN’s college basketball analyst), say that the missed call and the participants’ subsequent comments, demonstrate everything that is right about the game of baseball.
Now, from my perspective, this entire situation represents a huge opportunity for all those involved and for the public as well. That is, if everyone can just let the dust settle a little bit, I can promise you that the prospect of creating a path of success, from the depths of errant thinking, will appear right before our eyes.
We must never overlook the obvious truth that life rarely works out as we want it to. Yet, there exits an understanding that lies beneath all that occurs and ultimately shows us that every situation has the capacity to be productive. So, those who say that no harm would be done if the call were to be reversed are overlooking all the insightful examples for growth that this, and every, circumstance provides. Here, for example, the chance to show our youth (and all of us, for that matter) that we don’t always get what we want, human beings make mistakes, and that respect and not judgment, is always the better course of action.
In addition, those who are insisting that Galarraga got screwed are also, in the moment, failing to understand the central point of how life is truly designed. For, although it may not look like it at first, everything that happens to each of us along the way, is perfectly designed to show us the way, provided we allow our thinking to quiet in time for us to see it. I heard one commentator say that Galarraga might lose millions in endorsements because of the umpire’s mistake. My answer is- how do we know that to be true? And, if it is true, how do we know that to be wrong? To take it one step further, I would argue that if Galarraga and the umpire, Jim Joyce, play their cards right, the opportunity to profit (and I’m not necessarily speaking in financial terms) from this situation, will land right in their laps.
I suppose that the main message I am trying to impart is: we just never know. How many of us have had something seemingly awful occur, only to be thankful for it later, upon reflection? Wednesday night’s missed call is no different. Therefore, my hope is that all of those involved, including baseball’s front office and even the fans, give themselves the opportunity to realize this profound lesson.