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Day 15
At the World Series:

“Kelly Gruber is no good.”


“Good for nothing.”

'This guy, this Gruber, he irritated me from the day I saw him. Irritated me – like my clothes had sand in them, that kind of feeling. I don't know why.”

“He had this way of running or walking that was irritating even. Here's this big strong guy, skipping across the field, looking like a hippy. I knew right away this guy was no good. Didn't even know his name, but I knew he was no good.”

“So some years pass.”

“I see Gruber now and then, games here and there. Nothing special. I take my job as an umpire pretty serious, so I call it fair. All the time.”

“So, nothing special. Then it's the fourth inning of the third game of the world series, Jays against the Braves, and the Jays' outfielder White makes this fantastic catch, they get Pendleton, and Sanders, the third out, is caught in a run down. Gruber misses the tag on Sanders' foot.”

“'Safe,' I call it. Cause that's how I saw it. I called it as fair as I could. It didn't matter this guy Gruber had the ball. Woulda been the same call for anyone. Anyone.”

“So Gruber calls me some things. You know, fine. Whatever. He was pissed, he thought he had a triple play. So, fine, he calls me some things because he's mad.”

“After the game I see the replay a few times. So, yeah, I got the call wrong. I blew it. But it was an honest mistake, nothing to do with Gruber. Woulda been the same call for anyone. I just called like I saw it.”

“So, I said to some reporter that I was sorry I blew the call. Because, I was sorry. So I said I was sorry. He printed it, so, fine, that's what reporters do. Woulda been the first triple play in the World Series for seventy years. But this guy Gruber, he's so pissed, he's calling me at home, scaring my family, threatening me, calling me every name I've heard before, and then some. Good for nothing.”

“So then, next year my contract doesn't get renewed. Twenty-five years as an ump, and nothing. See you later. You know, if I wasn't doing my job right, fine, whatever, but I was a damn good ump, and they're letting me go. Nothing. I keep thinking it's about the Gruber call in the World Series, but they don't really tell me much, they just send me out the door.”

“The last year, I'm working at … whatever. I was working and here comes this guy through the door, and it's Gruber. And he walks up to me, he walks up to me and says, 'Hey, man, sorry about your job,' and he holds out his hand. So I just stare at him. I'm thinking, he gets me fired, then comes to gloat about it?”

“Gruber is good for nothing.”

* * * * *

Day 14 | Kelly Home | Day 16

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Matthew Dorrell

Kent Bruyneel

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