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If You Think The Cubs Always Get Victimized By Umpires...

You should have seen the end of last night's 3-2 Florida win over Houston, as I did via MLB Extra Innings.

This time, the umps actually got it right, after initially making the wrong call.

Scenario: top of the 9th, Marlins have the bases loaded, nobody out, and a run already in to tie the game 2-2.

Miguel Cabrera hits a high bouncer to third. Jose Vizcaino leaps and stabs it and in coming down his foot hits third base.

The 3B ump signals twice: once to indicate fair ball, then emphatically signals "out".

That takes the force off at the plate. But neither Astros catcher Brad Ausmus nor the plate umpire see this quickly enough. Vizcaino throws home and Ausmus steps on the plate and the umpire signals "out". Ausmus then throws to 1B, but the throw is late, and Cabrera is safe.

Jack McKeon runs out of the dugout to correctly argue that Ausmus had to tag the runner. After a conference, the umpires change the call. Jimy Williams, naturally, protests, but they got it right. And this turns out to be the winning run.

What was really the worst was the way the Astros TV announcers were whining about how the plate umpire made the wrong call. First of all, it happened so quickly that the plate ump might have been out of position. Ausmus had his back to the plate umpire so he never saw the call at all. But if you think Chip Caray is a bad announcer, you should have heard Bill Brown and Larry Dierker last night.

And if the Cubs win the Central by one game again, look back to May 13 as a critical date in the 2004 schedule.