The Giants-Cubs series in Chicago ended last night when Joe Panik struck out looking on a breaking ball on the outside corner. The Cubs were up 5-4 and the Giants were threatening with a man on second and two outs. Panik held on for a 3-2 count through six pitches, but Wade Davis finally got him with a curveball:
Panik’s reaction makes it pretty clear that he didn’t agree with the call, and neither did Giants manager Bruce Bochy, who was grouchy and grumbly after the game:
“We had them on fumes, and they get the benefit of a bad call. That’s not a strike, I’m sorry, but they got the call and that’s it,” said Bochy while making the face of a man who just realized he forgot his wife’s birthday.
Watching the pitch in real time, it seems like Bochy has a legitimate gripe, but Pitch f/x data shows the pitch was right on the edge of the zone:
Realistically, the call doesn’t matter very much, as games aren’t decided on a single pitch (usually). Ball four would have put Panik on first with Brandon Belt and Buster Posey behind him, and maybe the Giants would have knocked in two more and kept the Cubs from scoring in the bottom of the ninth. But they didn’t, and now they’re 20-28. You can see why Bochy is grumpy.