Finality of Golf
On the heels of the Jim Joyce, blown call in Major League Baseball, I was left considering the finality of golf. I cannot think of more than one situation in golf where there is any chance of a similar ruling taking place (and I’ll get to that one situation in a paragraph or two.)
The reason, plain and simple, is rest. In golf, the ball comes to rest and the result is as obvious as the sun. In bounds, out of bounds, within the hazard, outside the hazard, on the lip, in the cup.
Take the situation of the hole out. You look all around the green, don’t find your ball, take a drop, slump your shoulders, when all of a sudden, there it is. Golf provides for that … the ball is holed with your last stroke and everything else is moot. Imagine if that paradigm had been in place in MLB for Armando Galarraga – he’d be in the Hall of Fame and we’d have another perfect game.
My one potential golf rules misinterpretation takes place, naturally, not when the ball is at rest. When the ball crosses the hazard line (and more importantly, where) it is in motion, active, neither passive nor static. Those are the moments when perspective comes to the fore and determines a deniable outcome.
Fortunately for both sports, moments like these come along with great infrequency.
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