Jim Leyland heard the answer from home-plate umpire Gary Cederstrom on the third strike he called on Johnny Damon to turn a potential game-tying walk into a game-ending strikeout Saturday. It didn’t make Leyland feel any better about it.
“I called him after the game,” Leyland said. “I just said, ‘I hope you take a look at the pitch.’ He said, ‘Well, I kicked it.’ I knew that right away, but it was brutal on TV.”
Cederstrom told reporters after the game Saturday that he watched the replay and “it didn’t look good.”
Leyland agreed. “He’s right,” Leyland said. “It wasn’t good.”
Cederstrom worked Sunday’s game as the umpire at third base, right in front of the Tigers dugout. Leyland didn’t expect any lingering issues.
“I think it’s one of those things where you have to turn the page,” Leyland said.
Turning the page, though, does not include forgiveness, at least not from Leyland.
“That’s just not acceptable in those situations,” Leyland said. “It’s just not acceptable. That’s just the way it is.”