Herzog, umpire reach Hall of Fame

INDIANAPOLIS --- Whitey Herzog spent a good, long time stewing about a blown call in the 1985 World Series. So in a strange way, perhaps this fits: He's going into the Hall of Fame, standing next to an umpire.


Herzog and prominent crew chief Doug Harvey got the call Monday, elected to the Hall by the Veterans Committee.

Herzog was a single vote short in his previous try, and he might have made it sooner with another crown on his resume. But he was forever linked to Don Denkinger after the umpire's infamous miss in Game 6 so long ago cost the St. Louis Cardinals a chance to clinch.

"No, I'm not bitter at Denkinger," Herzog said at Busch Stadium. "He's a good guy, he knows he made a mistake, and he's a human being. It happened at an inopportune time, but I do think they ought to have instant replay in the playoffs and World Series."

The play came leading off the bottom of the ninth with St. Louis leading the Royals 1-0. Pinch-hitter Jorge Orta was called safe at first, even though replays showed first baseman Jack Clark's toss to pitcher Todd Worrell was in time. A missed popup helped Kansas City rally for two runs to win Game 6.

"How could he miss that call?" Herzog shouted that night, mixing in an expletive as he stormed down a runway tunnel. The next night, the Royals romped 11-0 in Game 7.

Herzog was a fixture in major league dugouts for two decades. He won the 1982 World Series and three NL pennants with the Cardinals and three division titles with Kansas City. He became the 19th manager to make the Hall.

As for Harvey, Herzog joshed: "I don't know why he should get in. Doug kicked me out of more games than any other umpire."

Like Herzog, Harvey fell one vote shy in the last election. This time, they both easily drew enough support.

Among those who came close this year was former players' union head Marvin Miller, who fell two votes short.


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