Saturday, March 1, 2014

UEFL Profile of MLB Umpire: Chris Conroy

Umpire Chris Conroy
Presenting the UEFL Profile of MLB Umpire Chris Conroy.
Name: Christopher Patrick Conroy
Date of Birth: July 22, 1974
Place of Birth: North Adams, Massachusetts

MiLB Leagues Worked: New York-Penn, South Atlantic, Carolina, Eastern, Pacific Coast and International Leagues.
MLB Debut: September 29, 2010
Level: MLB
Umpire Uniform Number: 98
Crew Chief: No

2016 Ejections: 2.
Ejection 171 (TOR 3B Josh Donaldson; QOC = N).
Ejection 085 (PIT CF Andrew McCutchen; QOC = N).

2015 Ejections: 3.
Ejection 207 (LAA P Hector Santiago; QOC = N).
Ejection 085 (LAA M Mike Scioscia; QOC = N).
Ejection 038 (CIN 1B Joey Votto; QOC = U).

2014 Ejections: 1.
Ejection 016 (SF M Bruce Bochy; QOC = Y).

2013 Ejections: 1 (100%).
Ejection 023 (TOR BC DeMarlo Hale; QOC = U).

2012 Ejections: 1.
Ejection 022 (ATL M Fredi Gonzalez; QOC = U).

First Career Ejection: 5/14/11; Ejection 037 (PIT M Clint Hurdle; QOC = Y).
Ejection History: 0 (2010), 3 (2011), 1 (2012), 1 (2013), 1 (2014), 3 (2015), 2 (2016).

UEFL History: Chris Conroy

Postseason and Special Events History
World Baseball Classic: -
All-Star Game: -
Wild Card Game: 2015
Division Series: -
Championship Series: -
World Series: -

Notes: Minor League umpire from 2000 through hire on June 14, 2013.
» Promoted to MLB staff in 2013 to replace Brian Runge, terminated due to an alleged drug violation.
» Worked the 2014 MLB Japan All-Star Series.

UEFL Profile of MLB Umpire Cory Blaser

Umpire Cory Blaser
Presenting the UEFL Profile of MLB Umpire Cory Blaser.
Name: Cory Steven Blaser
Date of Birth: December 8, 1981
Place of Birth: Denver, Colorado

MiLB Leagues Worked: Arizona, Midwest, Carolina, Eastern and Pacific Coast Leagues.
MLB Debut: April 24, 2010
Level: MLB
Umpire Uniform Number: 89
Crew Chief: No

2016 Ejections: 2.
Ejection 129 (MIA HC Barry Bonds; QOC = N).
Ejection 024 (ATL C AJ Pierzynski; QOC = N).

2015 Ejections: 2.
Ejection 160 (WAS PC Steve McCatty; QOC = Y).
Ejection 086 (PIT M Clint Hurdle; QOC = N).

2014 Ejections: 2.
Ejection 127 (ARI M Kirk Gibson; QOC = Y).
Ejection 126 (ARI 3B Martin Prado; QOC = Y).

2013 Ejections: 0.
2012 Ejections: 0.
2011 Ejections: 3.
Ejection 121 (COL M Jim Tracy; QOC = N).
Ejection 120 (COL C Chris Iannetta; QOC = N).
Ejection 022 (CWS CF Alex Rios; QOC = N).

Ejection History: 1 (2010), 3 (2011), 0 (2012), 0 (2013), 2 (2014), 2 (2015), 2 (2016).

UEFL History: Cory Blaser

Postseason and Special Events History
World Baseball Classic: -
All-Star Game: -
Wild Card Game: 2015
Division Series: 2016
Championship Series: -
World Series: -

Notes: Minor League umpire from 2002 through hire prior to the 2014 season (346 MLB games at hire).
» Promoted to MLB staff in 2014 in wake of baseball's expanded instant replay program.

UEFL Profile of MLB Umpire David Rackley

Umpire David Rackley
Presenting the UEFL Profile of MLB Umpire David Rackley.
Name: David Ross Rackley
Date of Birth: October 11, 1981
Place of Birth: Houston, Texas

MiLB Leagues Worked: Arizona, Northwest, South Atlantic, California, Texas and International Leagues.
MLB Debut: August 13, 2010
Level: MLB
Umpire Uniform Number: 86
Crew Chief: No

2016 Ejections: None.
2015 Ejections: 3.
Ejection 180 (SD M Pat Murphy; QOC = U).
Ejection 152 (MIA M Dan Jennings; QOC = Y-C).
Ejection 005 (PIT M Clint Hurdle; QOC = N).

2014 Ejections: 2.
Ejection 128 (CIN M Bryan Price; QOC = Y).
Ejection 125 (LAD RF Yasiel Puig; QOC = N).

2013 Ejections: 2.
Ejection 123 (STL M Mike Matheny; QOC = Y).
Ejection 122 (STL 2B Daniel Descalso; QOC = Y).

2012 Ejections: 1.
Ejection 140 (HOU SS Marwin Gonzalez; QOC = Y).

Ejection History: 0 (2010), 0 (2011), 1 (2012), 2 (2013), 2 (2014), 3 (2015), 0 (2016).

UEFL History: David Rackley

Postseason and Special Events History
World Baseball Classic: -
All-Star Game: -
Wild Card Game: 2016
Division Series: -
Championship Series: -
World Series: -

Notes: Minor League umpire from 2001 through hire prior to the 2014 season (170 MLB games at hire).
» Promoted to MLB staff in 2014 in wake of baseball's expanded instant replay program.

UEFL Profile of MLB Umpire: Mike Estabrook

Umpire Mike Estabrook
Presenting the UEFL Profile of MLB Umpire Mike Estabrook.
Name: Michael Joseph Estabrook
Date of Birth: July 28, 1976
Place of Birth: Daytona Beach, Florida

MiLB Leagues Worked: Gulf Coast, Appalachian, South Atlantic, Florida State, Southern and International Leagues.
MLB Debut: May 7, 2006
Level: MLB
Umpire Uniform Number: 83
Crew Chief: No

2016 Ejections: 3.
Ejection 126 (OAK 3B Danny Valencia; QOC = Y).
Ejection 110 (SF M Bruce Bochy; QOC = Y).
Ejection 109 (SF 1B Brandon Belt; QOC = Y).

2015 Ejections: 4.
Ejection 153 (PHI PC Bob McClure; QOC = Y).
Ejection 042 (TB HC Derek Shelton; QOC = Y).
Ejection 041 (TB M Kevin Cash; QOC = Y).
Ejection 003 (MIL 2B Scooter Gennett; QOC = Y).

2014 Ejections: None.
2013 Ejections: None.
2012 Ejections: 3.
Ejection 166 (KC DH Billy Butler; QOC = Y).
Ejection 157 (TB 1B Carlos Pena; QOC = N).
Ejection 117 (LAA PC Mike Butcher; QOC = Y).

Ejection History: 0 (2006), 0 (2007), 0 (2008), 3 (2009), 2 (2010), 6 (2011), 3 (2012), 0 (2013), 0 (2014), 4 (2015), 3 (2016).

UEFL History: Mike Estabrook

Postseason and Special Events History
World Baseball Classic: -
All-Star Game: -
Wild Card Game: 2015
Division Series: -
Championship Series: -
World Series: -

Notes: Minor League umpire from 1999 through hire prior to the 2014 season (696 MLB games at hire).
» Promoted to MLB staff in 2014 in wake of baseball's expanded instant replay program.

Friday, February 28, 2014

UEFL Profile of MLB Umpire Mike Muchlinski

Umpire Mike Muchlinski
Presenting the UEFL Profile of MLB Umpire Mike Muchlinski.
Name: Michael William Muchlinski
Date of Birth: February 26, 1977
Place of Birth: Tacoma, Washington

MiLB Leagues Worked: Arizona, Northwest, Midwest, Carolina, Eastern and Pacific Coast Leagues.
MLB Debut: April 24, 2006
Level: MLB
Umpire Uniform Number: 76
Crew Chief: No

2016 Ejections: 1.
Ejection 073 (LAD 3B Justin Turner; QOC = Y).

2015 Ejections: 2.
Ejection 194 (SD CF Melvin Upton, Jr.; QOC = Y).
Ejection 142 (SEA M Lloyd McClendon; QOC = Y).

2014 Ejections: 1.
Ejection 094 (SF M Bruce Bochy; QOC = N).

2013 Ejections: 1.
Ejection 133 (DET C Brayan Pena; QOC = U).

2012 Ejections: 1.
Ejection 027 (ATL PH Eric Hinske; QOC = N).

Ejection History: 1 (2007), 0 (2008), 1 (2009), 0 (2010), 6 (2011), 1 (2012), 1 (2013), 1 (2014), 2 (2015), 1 (2016).

UEFL History: Mike Muchlinski

Postseason and Special Events History
World Baseball Classic: 2006
All-Star Game: -
Wild Card Game: -
Division Series2016
Championship Series: -
World Series: -

Notes: Minor League umpire from 1999 through hire prior to the 2014 season (570 MLB games at hire).
» Promoted to MLB staff in 2014 in wake of baseball's expanded instant replay program.

UEFL Profile of MLB Umpire: Jordan Baker

Umpire Jordan Baker
Presenting the UEFL Profile of MLB Umpire Jordan Baker.
Name: Jordan Christopher Baker
Date of Birth: December 23, 1981
Place of Birth: Enid, Oklahoma

MiLB Leagues Worked: Arizona, Appalachian, New York-Penn, South Atlantic, International and Pacific Coast Leagues.
MLB Debut: June 22, 2012
Level: MLB
Umpire Uniform Number: 71
Crew Chief: No

2016 Ejections: 3.
Ejection 181 (PIT 1B Sean Rodriguez; QOC = U).
Ejection 180 (WAS P AJ Cole; QOC = U).
Ejection 165 (DET 2B Ian Kinsler; QOC = U).

2015 Ejections: 2.
Ejection 083 (SD M Bud Black; QOC = N).
Ejection 009 (BAL P Ubaldo Jiminez; QOC = U).

2014 Ejections: 5.
Ejection 089 (COL BC Tom Runnells; QOC = U).
Ejection 088 (COL P Nick Masset; QOC = U).
Ejection 087 (COL M Walt Weiss; QOC = U).
Ejection 086 (ATL P David Carpenter; QOC = U).
Ejection 019 (HOU M Bo Porter; QOC = U).

2013 Ejections: 3 (100%).
Ejection 070 (KC DH Billy Butler; QOC = U).
Ejection 064 (ARI BC Alan Trammell; QOC = U).
Ejection 002 (CLE P Carlos Carrasco; QOC = U).

2012 Ejections: 3.
Ejection 172 (SEA LF Michael Saunders; QOC = N).
Ejection 131 (NYM PH Daniel Murphy; QOC = N).
Ejection 096 (SF SS Brandon Crawford; QOC = U). *First Career Ejection*

Ejection History: 3 (2012), 3 (2013), 5 (2014), 2 (2015), 3 (2016).

UEFL History: Jordan Baker

Postseason and Special Events History
World Baseball Classic: -
All-Star Game: -
Wild Card Game: -
Division Series: -
Championship Series: -
World Series: -

Notes: Minor League umpire from 2005 through hire prior to the 2014 season (197 MLB games at hire).
» Promoted to MLB staff in 2014 in wake of baseball's expanded instant replay program.
» Baseball's tallest active umpire at 6'7" (Tim McClelland, 6'6").

UEFL Profile of MLB Umpire: DJ Reyburn

Umpire DJ Reyburn
Presenting the UEFL Profile of MLB Umpire DJ Reyburn.
Name: Daniel James Reyburn
Nickname: D.J.
Date of Birth: October 13, 1976
Place of Birth: Grand Rapids, Michigan

MiLB Leagues Worked: Arizona, Appalachian, Midwest, Florida State, Eastern, Pacific Coast, International Leagues.
MLB Debut: June 10, 2008
Level: MLB
Umpire Uniform Number: 70
Crew Chief: No

2016 Ejections: 3.
Ejection 138 (MIA AHC Frank Menechino; QOC = Y).
Ejection 103 (OAK CF Coco Crisp; QOC = N).
Ejection 060 (WAS HC Rick Schu; QOC = Y).

2015 Ejections: 3.
Ejection 150 (PIT M Clint Hurdle; QOC = U).
Ejection 149 (PIT P Mark Melancon; QOC = U).
Ejection 039 (CHC M Joe Maddon; QOC = Y).

2014 Ejections: 2.
Ejection 103 (MIN M Ron Gardenhire; QOC = Y).
Ejection 070 (BOS 2B Dustin Pedroia; QOC = Y).

2013 Ejections: 2 (50%).
Ejection 080 (CHC M Dale Sveum; QOC = N).
Ejection 033 (OAK M Bob Melvin; QOC = Y).

2012 Ejections: 5.
Ejection 094 (KC M Ned Yost; QOC = U).
Ejection 093 (KC SS Alcides Escobar; QOC = U).
Ejection 086 (CWS M Robin Ventura; QOC = Y).
Ejection 061 (LAD BC Trey Hillman; QOC = N).
Ejection 060 (LAD M Don Mattingly; QOC = N).
Pre-Season Ejection 002 (NYM M Terry Collins; QOC = U).

2011 Ejections: 2.
Ejection 184 (MIL 3B Casey McGehee; QOC = Y).
Ejection 055 (ARI M Kirk Gibson; QOC = Y).

Ejection History: 1 (2009), 4 (2010), 2 (2011), 5 (2012), 2 (2013), 2 (2014), 3 (2015), 3 (2016).

UEFL History: DJ Reyburn

Postseason and Special Events History
World Baseball Classic: 2013 Q
All-Star Game: -
Wild Card Game: -
Division Series: -
Championship Series: -
World Series: -

Notes: Minor League umpire from 2000 through hire prior to the 2014 MLB season.
» Promoted to MLB staff in 2014 in wake of baseball's expanded instant replay program.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Test Yourself: MLB Adopts Home Plate Collision Rule 7.13

MLB adopted a formal rule on home plate collisions meant to decrease violent contact at home plate on plays in which a runner attempts to score and a catcher attempts to tag him out by blocking home plate. After lengthy negotiations, Major League Baseball and the MLB Players Association reached an agreement to adopt the new Rule 7.13, which outlines rights and responsibilities for runners and catchers (or other defensive players) on specific plays at home plate that historically have proven susceptible to the traditional home plate collision.

Official Baseball Rule 7.13: Collisions at Home Plate
A runner attempting to score may not deviate from his direct pathway to the plate in order to initiate contact with the catcher (or other player covering home plate). If, in the judgment of the umpire, a runner attempting to score initiates contact with the catcher (or other player covering home plate) in such a manner, the umpire shall declare the runner out (even if the player covering home plate loses possession of the ball). In such circumstances, the umpire shall call the ball dead, and all other baserunners shall return to the last base touched at the time of the collision.
Rule 7.13 comment: The failure by the runner to make an effort to touch the plate, the runner's lowering of the shoulder, or the runner's pushing through with his hands, elbows or arms, would support a determination that the runner deviated from the pathway in order to initiate contact with the catcher in violation of Rule 7.13. If the runner slides into the plate in an appropriate manner, he shall not be adjudged to have violated Rule 7.13. A slide shall be deemed appropriate, in the case of a feet first slide, if the runner's buttocks and legs should hit the ground before contact with the catcher. In the case of a head first slide, a runner shall be deemed to have slid appropriately if his body should hit the ground before contact with the catcher.
Unless the catcher is in possession of the ball, the catcher cannot block the pathway of the runner as he is attempting to score. If, in the judgment of the umpire, the catcher without possession of the ball blocks the pathway of the runner, the umpire shall call or signal the runner safe. Notwithstanding the above, it shall not be considered a violation of this Rule 7.13 if the catcher blocks the pathway of the runner in order to field a throw, and the umpire determines that the catcher could not have fielded the ball without blocking the pathway of the runner and that contact with the runner was unavoidable.
This collision looks illegal, but is it? (Yes, it is)
In other words, a runner must attempt to touch home plate rather than initiate contact with the defensive player while the defensive player must concede a path to home plate unless he is in possession of the baseball. Nowhere in the Rule does interference and/or obstruction come into play as the umpire shall simply signal the runner safe if the catcher violates while penalties similar to interference (declared out, other runners back to bases) but not explicitly termed interference will result if the runner violates.

The new Rule 7.13 requires catchers to concede a path to home plate unless they have possession of the ball. The change here concerns timing. Whereas in 2013, a catcher could block the plate from the moment he was in the act of fielding the throw, in 2014, a catcher can only block the plate when he is in physical possession of the ball (after the catch) unless the throw clearly takes him into the path of the runner.

Got it? See below for sample videos of plays at the plate and make the call! Answers are below.

Scenarios 1-26: Compilation of plays at the plate (identified by timestamp in answer key) (Various)

Answer Key - Yellow represents legal play / Red signifies runner's violation / Green = fielder violated
1 (0:10): R2 is out; no violation of Rule 7.13 as runner did not deviate from his direct pathway to plate.
2 (0:23): R3 is out; legal play; runner does not deviate and catcher has possession of the ball.
3 (0:26): R3 is out; potential violation of Rule 7.13 as runner had access to home plate.
4 (0:28): R3 is out; angle prohibits discussion as to legality (did runner have access/catcher poss)?
5 (0:30): R3 is out; legal play; F2 must occupy position in order to field throw, contact unavoidable.
6 (0:32): R3 is safe; F2 violated, blocking pathway without ball possession.
7 (0:35 & 0:42): R3 is out; legal play; F2 must occupy in order to field throw, contact unavoidable.
8 (0:38): R3 is out; illegal because R3 deviates from direct pathway in order to initiate contact with catcher.
9 (0:52): R2 is out; illegal because R3 deviates from direct pathway (see still frame at 0:35).
10 (0:59): R2 is out; potentially illegal due to R2's actions; F2 possessed ball, contact unavoidable.
11 (1:08): R3 is out; illegal because R3 makes no attempt to touch, as in Rule 7.13 comment.
12 (1:16): R2 is out; illegal because R2 deviated by pushing through with upper body; F2 in poss.
13 (1:29): R2 is safe; F2 violated by blocking pathway without possession of the baseball.
14 (1:40): R1 is safe; legal, contact incidental because F2 must occupy position to receive the throw.
15 (1:57): Same Play as 6 (0:32) ("Posey play") - Posey violated by not having possession of the ball.
16 (2:09): R3 is safe; catcher fails to provide runner pathway by blocking plate without the ball.
17 (2:16): R1 is out; illegal because runner pushes through with upper body; initiates contact; F2 poss.
18 (2:30): R2 is safe; catcher occupies base path after failing to field throw in violation of 7.13 comment.
19 (2:46): R1 is safe; contact incidental (runner attempting to score, fielder has possession of ball).
20 (2:52): R3 is out; illegal because runner pushes through with upper body to initiate contact.
21 (3:06)R2 is out; illegal, runner deviated from direct pathway to initiate contact with catcher.
22 (3:24): R3 is out; illegal, runner makes no effort to touch plate; deviates to initiate contact.
23 (3:35): R3 is safe; contact incidental as catcher must occupy position in order to field throw.
24 (3:48): R2 is out; contact incidental as catcher occupies pos to receive throw, runner attempts to score.
25 (4:02): R3 is out; illegal, runner pushes through with upper body to initiate contact on catcher in poss.
26 (4:11): R1 is out; contact incidental as catcher carried up the line to receive the throw from RF.