Friday, April 6, 2012

MLB Umpire Brothers Open Hirschbeck's Sports Bar & Grille

MLB Umpire brothers Mark and John Hirschbeck have opened a sports bar in Shelton, Connecticut. The Hirschbecks were the first brothers in MLB history to umpire at the same time; since then, brothers Bill and Tim Welke have joined the familial co-worker ranks, serving on the same umpiring crew until two years ago.

Mark Hirschbeck was forced into retirement in 2003 after his artificial hip shattered during a Diamondbacks-Rockies game. The younger Hirschbeck sued manufacturer Wright Medical Technology and settled for $3 million.

As first reported by the Umpire Ejection Fantasy League last month, John Hirschbeck was placed on MLB's umpiring disabled list this offseason after missing the entire 2008 season due to back surgery and the final two months of the 2009 season due to cancer treatment and surgery. Unfortunately, the cancer appears to have returned and Hirschbeck is once again fighting the illness.

"John recently went through chemotherapy so this opening means a lot to me and him," said Mark Hirschbeck during the Hirschbeck's Sports Bar & Grille opening ceremony: "I wish he was here right now to be a part of this." Indications suggest a John Hirschbeck retirement following the 2012 season if the illness has not been controlled by season's end while Hirschbeck may vow to return in 2013 if treatment is successful, though the decision has not yet been finalized.

The bar features three 80-inch, high definition televisions and numerous signed baseball jerseys and other memorabilia, including the New York Yankees' home plate from 1984: "We want it to be more like a museum," said Mark, while chef Jim Barrett (no relation to MLB Umpire Ted Barrett) described the menu as "upscale bar food."

Hirschbeck's Sports Bar & Grille is located at 882 Bridgeport Ave. in Shelton, CT, at the Stop & Shop plaza.

And as a final 'Hirschbeck' touch, bartenders not wearing the white uniform polo with the bar's logo are outfitted not with black or blue umpire shirts, but with black-and-white referee jerseys.

It is unknown whether Family Guy character Peter Griffin's idea of playing "a retired baseball umpire who opens a bar at the center of the earth" might be responsible for the Hirschbeck's Sports Bar & Grille concept.

News: Former MLB Umpires Open Sports Bar in Shelton


Anonymous said...

Best of luck to John and Mark, injuries and illness is a curse.

jim said...

Wonder when they'll book country Joe West for his first singing gig. On another note, I see that Jim Joyce is in Arizona now that Armando Galarraga is out of town, released by Baltimore today I think.

Anonymous said...

This is totally false. John is not part of this restaurant but his brother Vinny is. The news articles are deceiving.Just trying to make it look like the two are together.

cgreen said...

Would Joe West want to sing at the bar opened (or fronted) by John and Mark after what these two did in 1999? John (backed) by Mark led the effort that resulted in West losing his job for two years ? I don't know

Anonymous said...

Well considering the two of them got west a raise of over $120k a year once he returned.......and he received back pay for the time he missed. I'm going to say yes, he would sing there.

cgreen said...

I may be wrong but West dosen't seem like he would have been one of the more extreme militant guys in the old union who can hold grudges until death like Froemming, Terry Tata, etc. I wonder how many of the guys on the losing side in 99' have made some kind of peace with Hirschbeck. He's been on post-season crews with alot of them, especailly in the 2010 World Series. They sent Hirschbeck to replace Mike Winters on Froemming's crew after the Milton Bradley incident in September 2007. It was the last series of Froemming's career and they sent a guy, a former close friend against whom he held a huge grudge, to be on his crew. I wonder how that went.

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