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Don Denkinger

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Donald Anton Denkinger

[edit] Biographical Information

Don Denkinger was an umpire in the Alabama-Florida League (1960), Northwest League (1961-1962), Texas League (1963-1965), and International League (1966-1968). He was then an American League umpire from 1969 to 1998.

He was the crew chief for the 1985 World Series and made an infamous call in the 9th inning of Game 6, calling Jorge Orta pf the Kansas City Royals safe at first base when replays showed that the toss from 1B Jack Clark to P Todd Worrell had beaten him to the bag. Down to their last inning and trailing three games to two and 1-0 on the road, the Royals got an unexpected reprieve and managed to score twice to win that game, and then defeat the St. Louis Cardinals, 11-0, in Game 7 to claim the only World Series title in team history. In Game 7, Cardinals pitcher Joaquin Andujar and manager Whitey Herzog tried to pick a fight with Denkinger, who was now working home plate, over the previous night's call and were both ejected from the game. Cardinals fans rue Denkinger's name to this day, arguing that he cost them the World Series title.

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