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Monday, March 30, 2015

MLB Ejections S-9-11: Chad Fairchild (S-1-3; PHI-PIT)

HP Umpire Chad Fairchild ejected Phillies 1B Coach Juan Samuel and Pirates 3B Coach Rick Sofield for Unsportsmanlike-NEC in the bottom of the 5th and Pirates Manager Clint Hurdle for arguing strike calls in the bottom of the 6th inning of the Phillies-Pirates game. In the 5th, with none out and none on, Samuel and Sofield engaged in a verbal dispute, resulting in a bench-clearing incident, the call was irrecusable. In the 6th, with one out and one on, Pirates batter Andrew Lambo struck out on three pitches from Phillies pitcher Kevin Slowey. Replays are unavailable (pitch f/x unavailable), the call was irrecusable. At the time of the 5th inning ejections, the Pirates were leading, 6-0. At the time of Hurdle's ejection, the Pirates were leading, 10-2. The Pirates ultimately won the contest, ---.

These are Chad Fairchild (4)'s first, second and third ejections of Spring 2015.
Chad Fairchild now has 0 points in the UEFL Standings (0 Previous + 0 Spring Training = 0).
Crew Chief Chad Fairchild now has 0 points in the UEFL Standings (0 Previous + 0 Irrecusable/ST = 0).

These are the 9th, 10th and 11th ejections of MLB Spring Training 2015.
This is the 3rd Manager ejection of the MLB Spring Training 2015.
This is the Phillies' first ejection of Spring 2015, 3rd in the Grapefruit League (ATL 3; PIT 2; PHI 1).
This is the Pirates' 1st/2nd ejection of Spring 2015, 2nd in the Grapefruit League (ATL 3; PIT 2; PHI 1).
This is Juan Samuel's first ejection since May 23, 2014 (Seth Buckminster; QOC = U [USC-DiMuro]).
This is Rick Sofield's first ejection since May 4, 2014 (Greg Gibson; QOC = Y [Balls/Strikes]).
This is Clint Hurdle's first ejection since July 22, 2014 (Jeff Nelson; QOC = U [Arguing Ejection]).

Wrap: Philadelphia Phillies vs. Pittsburgh Pirates (Grapefruit League Spring Training), 3/30/15
Video: Argument between Samuel and Sofield turns into bench clearer in blowout ST game (N/A)

Sunday, March 29, 2015

MLB Ejection S-8: Jeff Nelson (S1; Terry Pendleton)

2B Umpire Jeff Nelson ejected Braves 1B Coach Terry Pendleton for arguing a balk no-call in the bottom of the 7th inning of the Pirates-Braves game. With one out and one on, Braves batter Andrelton Simmons took a 0-0 fastball from Pirates pitcher John Holdzkom for a called first ball. Replays are unavailable concerning the balk no-call; During the top of the 7th inning, Braves pitcher Jason Grilli committed two balks, the call was irrecusable. At the time of the ejection, the Pirates were leading, 2-1. The Pirates ultimately won the contest, 4-2.

This is Jeff Nelson (45)'s first ejection of 2015 Spring Training.
Jeff Nelson now has 0 points in the UEFL Standings (0 Previous + 0 Spring Training = 0).
Crew Chief Larry Vanover now has 0 points in the UEFL Standings (0 Previous + 0 Irrecusable/ST = 0).

This is the 8th ejection of MLB Spring Training 2015.
This is the Braves' third ejection of Spring 2015, 1st in the Grapefruit League (ATL 3, All Others 0).
This is Terry Pendleton's first ejection since Sept 10, 2010 (Jim Reynolds; QOC = N-C [Balls/Strikes]).*
This is Jeff Nelson's first ejection since September 26, 2014 (Rick Renteria; QOC = Y [Balk]).

*QOC for the 9/10/10 ejection is incorrect. U1 Reynolds ruled "no swing" on a pitch that PU Tim Welke had incorrectly ruled a ball (pitch was located within the strike zone). Thus, QOC = N-Crewmate.

Wrap: Pittsburgh Pirates vs. Atlanta Braves (Grapefruit League Spring Training), 3/29/15
Video: Pendleton protests umpire crew's interpretation of deception, prompting heave-ho (N/A)

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Non-Roster AAA Umps Get Call in Final Days of Spring

Several non-roster AAA umpires joined Spring Training as the annual MLB March tune-up entered its final week.

Then-AA Umpire Max Guyll ejects Bryce
Harper during a 2011 Eastern League game.
For clarity's sake, these are non-Spring Training roster invites—MiLB call-ups Ryan Blakney, Ryan Goodman, Nick Lentz, Carlos Torres, and Doug Vines have been working the full slate in Arizona and Florida alongside their sleeve-numbered colleagues. Having concluded their 2015 Minor League Spring Training meetings, the following umpires have been given Major League pre-season opportunities (this list will be updated as the final week of Spring Training progresses):

Florida - Grapefruit League
Max Guyll (AAA Affiliation: International League) - 3/28

Arizona - Cactus League
Eric Arenn (AAA Affiliation: None) - 3/29
Joseph Born (AAA Affiliation: International League) - 3/29
Travis Eggert (AAA Affiliation: Pacific Coast League) - 3/28
Shaun Lampe (AAA Affiliation: PCL; was on the 2014 Spring Training roster) - 3/28
Jeff Morrow (AAA Affiliation: PCL; was on the 2014 Spring Training roster) - 3/29
Alex Ortiz (AAA Affiliation: PCL; was on the 2014 Spring Training roster) - 3/28
Alberto Ruiz (AAA Affiliation: PCL) - 3/29
Greg Stanzak (AAA Affiliation: PCL) - 3/28

All Saturday, March 28 non-roster invitees were assigned to the home plate umpire position.
Umpires on Sunday, March 29, were assigned to various roles (plate/bases).

Friday, March 27, 2015

MiLB Announces Umpire Department Name Changes

Minor League Baseball announced name changes for its umpiring properties based in Florida. According to Director (and former MiLB ump himself) Dusty Dellinger, "We wanted to capitalize on the established brand of Minor League Baseball to help provide a clearer identity within the baseball industry."

The new MiLB umpire logos (Photo: MiLB.com)
The Umpire School changed its name to the Minor League Baseball Umpire Training Academy, which both confirms the institution's association with Minor League Baseball and delineates the purpose of the Academy, which is to train umpires. "Academy" comes from the former Jim Evans Academy of Professional Umpiring name. With JEAPU de-certified, MiLB hired Evans as Umpire Advisor this past offseason, effectively making the newly named MiLB Umpire Training Academy the new JEAPU. The name also differentiates MiLB's holding from the Wendelstedt School.

Professional Baseball Umpire Corp. changed its name to Minor League Baseball Umpire Development, which also uses the MiLB name to align itself with the league it serves while using "development" to depict what its purpose is, though the jury's still out on whether MiLBUD is a better acronym than PBUC.

The Umpire Training Academy also changed its website address to www.milbumpireacademy.com.

News: MiLB announces changes to umpire entities (Minor League Baseball)

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Derryl Cousins Arrested in Arizona for Extreme DUI

Retired MLB umpire Derryl Cousins was arrested in Arizona last week on suspicion of extreme DUI, reports the Los Angeles Daily News. Cousins graduated from the LA-area El Segundo High School and El Camino College.

Former MLBU Derryl Cousins in 2009
According to a police report filed in Scottsdale, AZ, Cousins was driving slowly and drifting over lane dividers in downtown at 2:22 a.m. on March 18. The report states that Cousins registered a blood alcohol reading .220 at the scene and subsequently blew a BAC as high as .231 at the booking station, which is nearly four times over the legal limit. According to Arizona state law, this qualifies for the charge of extreme DUI; Cousins was released on $2,000 bail and will be assigned a future court date. Extreme DUI is classified as a misdemeanor.

The officer noted that Cousins was polite throughout the traffic stop, arrest and booking process, stating, "I'm a law-abiding citizen, I've just been drinking too much."

Cousins retired from baseball in 2013 following 34 years of Major League service and 4,496 MLB games worked. The veteran crew chief officiated 3 All-Star Games, 5 Division Series, 7 League Championship Series and 3 World Series; he ejected 118 players, coaches and managers in his time on the field.

News: Retired MLB umpire Derryl Cousins arrested on Extreme DUI in Arizona (LA Daily News)

Monday, March 23, 2015

MLB Ejections S-4-7: Tom Woodring (S1-4; 4 D'Backs)

HP Umpire Tom Woodring ejected Diamondbacks pitcher Allen Webster, Manager Chip Hale, pitcher Derek Eitel and Bench Coach Glenn Sherlock for throwing at Dodgers batters Justin Turner and Dillon Moyer in the bottom of the 5th and 8th innings, respectively, of the Diamondbacks-Dodgers game. In the 1st inning, Dodgers pitcher Chris Anderson hit Diamondbacks batter Mark Trumbo and Diamondbacks pitcher Daniel Hudson hit Dodgers batter Turner with inside fastballs, leading to Woodring issuing warnings to both teams. In the 5th, with warnings in effect, Dodgers lead-off batter Turner took a 2-0 fastball from D'Backs pitcher Webster for a hit-by-pitch, and was injured and left the game as a result. In the 8th, Dodgers batter Dillon Moyer took a first-pitch fastball from D'Backs pitcher Eitel for a hit-by-pitch. Replays indicate both HBPs were inside (pitch f/x unavailable), the calls were irrecusable. At the time of the 5th inning ejections, the Dodgers were leading, 4-1. At the time of the 8th inning ejections, the game was tied, 4-4. The Dodgers ultimately won the contest, 7-4.

These are Tom Woodring (75)'s first, second, third and fourth ejections of 2015 Spring Training.
Tom Woodring now has 0 points in the UEFL Standings (0 Previous + 0 Spring Training = 0).
Crew Chief Bill Miller now has 0 points in the UEFL Standings (0 Previous + 0 Irrecusable/ST = 0).

These are the 3rd and 4th player ejections of Spring Training.
This is the 2nd Manager ejection of Spring Training.
These are the D'Backs' 1st-4th ejections of the preseason, 1st in the Cactus League (ARI 4, SEA 1).
This is Allen Webster's first career MLB ejection.
This is Chip Hale's first ejection since May 30, 2013 (Brian Knight; QOC = Y [Fan Interference]).
This is Derek Eitel's first career MLB ejection.
This is Glenn Sherlock's first career MLB ejection.
These are Tom Woodring's first ejections since May 7, 2014 (Rick Renteria; QOC = Y [Balls/Strikes]).

Wrap: Arizona Diamondbacks vs. Los Angeles Dodgers (Cactus League Spring Training), 3/23/15
Video: Woodring issues warnings to both benches as Turner gets hit in the 1st inning (LAD)
Video: Turner is drilled by Webster's inside pitch, drawing heave-hos and a game-ending injury (LAD)
Video: Bean ball war claims Moyer's back, prompting two more Arizona dismissals (LAD)

Saturday, March 21, 2015

2015 UEFL Appeals Board Election

Welcome to the 2015 UEFL Appeals Board election. Pursuant to UEFL Rule 6-4-a, the Umpire Ejection Fantasy League has established an Appeals Board that shall routinely rule on issues of Quality of Correctness. Comprised of a roster of nine voting members, including both Commissioners and seven at-large volunteers, a pre-season nomination and election process has been established to complete this year's Board.

Listed in random order, the following two UEFL'ers have been nominated for and are seeking election to the 2015 UEFL Appeals Board. Voting closes at 11:59 PM PDT on Friday, March 27, 2015 (voting is now closed). Candidate statements are available on Page 7 of the March 2015 issue of The Left Field Corner:

Friday, March 20, 2015

MLB Ejection S-3: Ben May (S1; Alex Claudio)

HP Umpire Ben May ejected Rangers pitcher Alex Claudio for throwing at Mariners batter Jesus Sucre in the top of the 7th inning of the Mariners-Rangers game. With none out and none on, Sucre took a first-pitch fastball from Claudio for a hit-by-pitch. Replays indicate the pitch was located inside (pitch f/x unavailable) and was the third hit batsman of the game, the call was irrecusable. At the time of the ejection, the Mariners were leading, 3-2. The contest ultimately ended in a 4-4 tie.

This is Ben May (97)'s first ejection of 2015.
Ben May now has 0 points in the UEFL Standings (0 Prev + 0 [Spring Training Ejection] = 0).
Crew Chief Jordan Baker now has 0 points in Crew Division (0 Previous + 0 Spring Training = 0).

This is the 3rd ejection of the 2015 MLB Spring Training Preseason.
This is the 2nd player ejection of Spring Training. Prior to ejection, Claudio's line was 0.0IP, HBP.
This is the Mariners' 1st ejection of the preseason, 1st in the Cactus League (SEA 1, Others 0).
This is Alex Claudio's first career MLB ejection.
This is Ben May's first ejection since August 28, 2014 (Chris Coghlan; QOC = Y [Balls/Strikes]).

Wrap: Seattle Mariners vs. Texas Rangers (Cactus League Spring Training), 3/20/15
Video: After drilling Sucre, Claudio is tossed for intentionally throwing at a batter (N/A)

Off Bereavement, Sam Holbrook Returns to the Field

Veteran MLB umpire Sam Holbrook returned from the bereavement list to officiate his first Spring Training game since 2013 following the February 10, 2014 death of his wife, Laura "Susie" Glass. Susie, who was diagnosed with cancer during the 2010 preseason, was 47 years old. Holbrook returned to the field during Friday's Phillies-Pirates Grapefruit League game as a field umpire (starting at third base).

Holbrook has been assigned to chief John Hirschbeck's crew for the 2015 regular season (link: 2015 crew list). Like Holbrook, Hirschbeck is returning from the bereavement list this season, having suffered the loss of his son Michael in April 2014.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

MLB Ejection S-2: Joe West (S1; AJ Pierzynski)

HP Umpire Joe West ejected Braves catcher AJ Pierzynski for arguing a ball three call in the top of the 6th inning of the Yankees-Braves game. With none out and two on, Yankees batter Brian McCann took a 2-0 fastball from Braves pitcher Arodys Vizcaino for a called third ball. It was the 11th consecutive ball of the inning. Replays indicate the pitch was located near the lower bound of the strike zone (pitch f/x unavailable), the call was irrecusable. At the time of the ejection, the Yankees were leading, 7-3. The Yankees ultimately won the contest, 12-5.

This is Joe West (22)'s first ejection of 2015.
Joe West now has 0 points in the UEFL Standings (0 Prev + 0 [Spring Training Ejection] = 0).
Crew Chief Joe West now has 0 points in Crew Division (0 Previous + 0 Spring Training = 0).

This is the 2nd ejection of the 2015 MLB Spring Training Preseason.
This is the 1st player ejection of Spring Training. Prior to ejection, Pierzynski was 1-2 in the contest.
This is the Braves' 2nd ejection of the preseason, 1st in the Grapefruit League (ATL 2, Others 0).
This is A.J. Pierzynski's first ejection since June 4, 2014 (Quinn Wolcott; QOC = Y [Balls/Strikes]).
This is Joe West's first ejection since September 14, 2014 (Jonathan Papelbon; QOC = U [lewdness]).

Wrap: New York Yankees vs. Atlanta Braves (Grapefruit Spring Training), 3/18/15
Video: West tosses Pierzynski, explaining to Fredi, "we need a new catcher; he's done" (ATL)