Donald accepts reality: He was out
Indians rookie sees on replay that ninth-inning call was wrong
DETROIT -- It took Jason Donald a couple of hours Wednesday night to see what the rest of the baseball world already knew."Yeah," Donald said Thursday morning, "I was out." Donald suspected as much all along, of course. But he had trouble admitting it in the aftermath of the Indians' 3-0 loss to the Tigers and the blown call at first base that gave him the infield single that broke up Armando Galarraga's bid for perfection with two out in the ninth inning.
Umpire Jim Joyce was the one who made the call. He watched a replay immediately after the game and confessed to reporters that he had blown "the biggest call of my career."Donald, on the other hand, didn't watch a replay until he got back to the team hotel around 11 p.m. ET. "I was out," he said. "It helps that Jim Joyce came out and said that he missed it. I had a feeling I was out when it happened, but it just happened so fast. So I thought, 'Maybe I did beat it. I don't know.'" But the rookie's disbelief in the fact that he was called safe showed on the field. At first, he smacked his hands together in celebration, then he immediately raised those same hands to his helmet. All he had been trying to do was hustle to first. Instead, he hustled to history. "The enormity of the situation sunk in," Donald said. "It was like, 'Oh man, I think I was out, but I'm not really sure.' It was just a natural reaction." Naturally, Donald has been pretty popular in the wake of the play. Not only has he been on highlight reels on virtually every television network, but his cell phone has been hyperactive. "My phone was ringing, buzzing nonstop," he said. "Pretty much all the way through until this morning. I put my phone on silent and just left it alone. I was getting tired of it. People are joking around with me, saying 'I don't care what the replay says, I still think you were safe.'" Some wise guy on Twitter posted that he thought Donald was safe, followed by the hash tag, "peoplewhohavejasondonaldontheirfantasyteam." But Donald knows the truth, and he felt a little awkward to be involved in such a memorable moment. "It's been crazy," he said. "I feel bad just for the whole situation of how it's played out and how it's worked out, the position that it put Jim Joyce and Armando in."
Anthony Castrovince is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.