Philadelphia Phillies: A tale of two controversial calls

Close calls are the name of the game when it comes to sports.

Fans want to see the excitement of their favorite players mixing it up with heated rivals and leave it all out on the field. One thing that fans do not want to see is the officials deciding the game. And that is exactly what happened on Sunday for two Philadelphia teams.

Both the Philadelphia Flyers and Philadelphia Phillies games ended on controversial rulings by the officials.

Philadelphia Flyers lost to the Buffalo Sabres on a soccer goal.

Coming into the weekend, the Flyers were in desperate need of points if they wanted any chance of making the playoffs. The orange and black took care of the Bruins on Saturday, defeating them 3-2 in the first game of a back-to-back. Sunday’s challenge was against the worst team in the league, the Buffalo Sabres, who have already beat the Flyers twice this season in a commanding 6-1 game both times.
At the start of the third period, the game was tied 2-2 with goals from Lindblom and Farabee. Three minutes into the third, Shayne Gostisbehere scored to give the Flyers the lead. A lead that they held on to until three minutes left in the game. Jeff Skinner of the Sabres scored the game tying goal off of a scramble in front of the net.

The goal was immediately looked at by the officials and the NHL, who agreed that the goal was legal. From the look of the video, there is a distinct kicking motion by Skinner and not a redirection off his foot. Giroux’s foot does make contact with Skinner’s as they collide in front of the net, but after that, Skinner extends his foot to kick the puck into the net.
Buffalo would score again thirty seconds later to take the lead and iced the game in the final minute with an empty netter.

The Philadelphia Phillies win on a close call at the plate

The Phillies are off to the best start they have had in seasons, going 6-3 in the first few games of the season. Sunday night on national TV, the Phillies took on the Braves to avoid being swept for the first time all season. The game was tied at six going into the top of the ninth when Didi Gregorius came up to bat with Alec Bohm on third. Gregorius hit a sacrifice fly to shallow left where left fielder Marcell Ozuna made the easy catch. Bohm tagged up at third and sprinted home. Ozuna made the throw to catcher Travis d’Arnaud who collided with Bohm at the plate where home plate umpire Lance Barrett called Bohm safe. Braves manager Brian Snitker would go on to challenge the call.

The call was upheld after video review, citing that there was no conclusive evidence to overturn the call. In the video, you can not tell if Bohm’s toe was on the plate or not, causing the play to stand. Braves fans voiced their displeasure by littering the field with debris. The Phillies would hold on to win and avoid being swept to keep a two-game lead on Atlanta in the early divisional race.

So I guess what goes around comes around. When one Philadelphia team loses from a controversial call, another will win from a similar call. The problem is the Flyers have fifteen games left and are four points out of the playoffs with a 9.8 percent chance of making the postseason and the trade deadline on Monday, while the Phillies have over 150 games still to go.