Public Admonishing of Umpires

Didn’t get to watch any baseball last night as I was the emcee for the Norcrest Elementary School PTA Fundraiser. Jeanne was the chair of the event – I just stood on the stage and talked about some of the cool things people could bid on and announced winners. We raised about $13,000 last night, which is pretty cool.

The best item, probably, was a deal provided by Santana Moss, whose kids go to Norcrest and went to pre-school with Casey. He is paying for four people to fly to Washington DC, stay in a hotel for the weekend, and be his guest at a Redskins game… Top bid was around $2500.

The verdict is in – Carlos Zambrano will miss six games.

With most position players, this would be a two game suspension, but for starting pitchers they have to do more games because they have to make sure he misses a normal turn in the rotation. Frankly, this is unfair to the pitchers who then get docked six days pay instead of two days pay. Can we get a system that separates making the pitcher miss a turn in the rotation from getting whacked in the paycheck?

More unfair, however, is the umpire leaning in and causing the bump – it was totally inadvertant. Had the umpire backed off instead of leaning in and turning in Zambrano’s direction, the Gatorade machine is saved and cooler heads might have prevailed.

And, at what point should an umpire just challenge people? Back off, allow for a short vent, ask them to leave, and walk away. If the player or manager chases, then you have room to kick someone out. But sometimes you have to walk away. And, when the umpire is out of line – as he was here, and the umpire who pushed Magglio Ordonez out of the batter’s box, I want public admonishment from MLB.

Take last night’s fiasco between the Twins and Red Sox where a bad home plate umpire having a rough night missed a call at the plate and then had to run Mike Redmond and Ron Gardenhire – and THEN, because his strike zone judgment was impaired, ran Jason Varitek and Terry Francona. If four people are tossed, maybe the umpire needs a six-day suspension.

Todd Tichenor needs a suspension and the league should announce it.

The Phillies Brett Myers may have hip surgery, which would put the defending champs in a bit of a (Randy) lurch. Myers said in an interview that there was fraying in his hip.

Jorge Posada will be with the Yankees as they begin a series in Cleveland. Players who arrived early got to see a great basketball game last night…

Cubs utility infielder Ryan Freel went on the DL last night with a strained hamstring – not surprising since Freel does this every couple of months or so. Bobby Scales, who had been dispatched to AAA Iowa, was asked to turn the car around and head back to the park. Scales returned in time to hit a pinch hit homer in the Cubs loss to the Dodgers.

On the transaction list, Baltimore recalled David Hernandez from AAA Norfolk, gave him the start last night, and he won his debut. Hernandez can pitch. In the minors, he averaged 10.4 Ks per nine, he kept the ball in the park, and while he’s occasionally wild, he’s been dominating people the last two years. He had 60Ks in 43.1 innings at Norfolk. This is the kind of dominating performance you want from a propsect. I hope he stays – he’s a heckuva lot better than Adam Eaton. If you are hunting for a cheap starter, go get him.

Mike MacDougal, former Royals arm, gets a chance with the Nationals. Meanwhile, former Orioles closer Chris Ray heads back to Norfolk to find his stuff.

On the Mend? Tom Glavine had a successful rehab start. Annibel Sanchez was assigned to Jupiter (may have to find a night to see him pitch) by the Marlins. C Carlos Dominguez was sent to Bakersfield by Texas.

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Filed under Adam Eaton, Anibal Sanchez, Atlanta Braves, Baltimore Orioles, Bobby Scales, Brett Myers, Carlos Dominguez, Carlos Zambrano, Chicago Cubs, Chris Ray, David Hernandez, Detroit Tigers, Jason Varitek, Jorge Posada, Magglio Ordonez, Mike Redmond, Minnesota Twins, New York Yankees, Philadelphia Phillies, Ryan Freel, Tom Glavine, Washington Nationals

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