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|DailyWheel blog number 6104...
|Harry had a wide strike zone
Created August 2, 2012, 2:53 am, by jemmy
NEW YORK -- Longtime umpire Harry Wendelstedt, who worked five World Series and made a call involving Don Drysdale that became one of baseballs most disputed plays in the late 1960s, died Friday. New Orleans Saints Jersey. He was 73. Wendelstedt died at Florida Hospital Memorial Medical Center in Daytona Beach, Fla., near the umpiring school he ran for more than three decades in Ormond Beach. He had been diagnosed several years ago with a brain tumour. Wendelstedt called seven NL championship series and four All-Star games, and was behind the plate for five no-hitters. He was on the major league umpiring staff from 1966-98. His son, Hunter, is a big league umpire and wears the same No. 21 that his father wore. The Wendelstedts worked games together in 1998 -- it was Hunters first year in the majors and Harrys last season. Hall of Fame manager Tom Lasorda has championed Wendelstedt for enshrinement in Cooperstown. "Hes got as good a chance as anybody. He deserves it," Lasorda told The Associated Press after learning of Wendelstedts death. Lasorda said he was scouting for Los Angeles and was in the stands when Wendelstedt made his most notable call on May 31, 1968, at Dodger Stadium. Drysdale was trying for his fifth straight shutout -- and was heading toward setting a then-record of 58 2-3 scoreless innings -- when San Francisco loaded the bases with no outs in the ninth inning. Drysdale threw a 2-2 pitch that struck Dick Dietz on the elbow, and the shutout streak seemed to be over. But Wendelstedt, the plate umpire, immediately ruled that Dietz didnt try to get out of the way. Wendelstedt called the pitch a ball and told Dietz to get back in the batters box. "Id never seen that call before in the big leagues," Lasorda recalled. "Never had seen anyone make it." After a heated argument, the game resumed. On a full-count pitch, Dietz flied out and Drysdale wound up pitching a shutout. Orel Hershiser set the shutout record of 59 innings in 1988, pitching under Lasorda. "Harry had a wide strike zone, he liked to see hitters swing the bat," Lasorda said, laughing. "Dick Dietz. Harry, he got him out.