Tuesday, May 5, 2015
Jays Appeal Punishment for Jacoby-Eddings Ump Shove
According to several sources, Blue Jays hitting coach Brook Jacoby received a 14-game suspension from MLB Chief Baseball Officer Joe Torre for allegedly shoving umpire Doug Eddings after the Blue Jays lost to the Red Sox by a 4-1 score on a called third strike to pinch hitter Russell Martin on April 29—one account states Jacoby had his hands up against Eddings' neck. Adrian Johnson was the plate umpire for that game.
Though the Blue Jays dispute the veracity of the "conduct [and contact] unbecoming" claim, sources say that Crew Chief Bill Miller's report is backed up by a Red Sox security official who was present at the time of the incident. Another source said a report filed by the Boston-area Resident Security Agent supports the umpires' position. RSAs are sworn officers hired by Major League Baseball to represent the interests of the Commissioner's Office at MLB stadiums. Sources say that Jays Bench Coach DeMarlo Hale pulled Jacoby away.
As the Blue Jays appeal Jacoby's suspension, sources also revealed that Jays Manager John Gibbons received a $5,000 fine for contributing to the incident in Boston. The report states that "baseball believed Gibbons’ comments set the tone for the heated exchange that was to follow in the hallways leading to the respective clubhouses for teams and umpires."
Newly-hired Assistant Hitting Coach Eric Owens filled in for the appealing Jacoby this week, pursuant to league protocol that bars suspended coaches from the playing field during games while their suspension is pending appeal.
Fenway Park protocol for visiting teams and umpires along the shared hallway to their respective locker rooms has also changed: Away clubs must now wait in the dugout until the last umpire has crossed the threshold into the officials' dressing room. This policy applies to other stadiums where a team and umpires share the same corridor, namely Wrigley Field and Toronto's own Rogers Centre.
Eddings has never ejected a Blue Jay during his MLB career.
Miller last ejected ex-Blue Jays Brett Lawrie and John Farrell on May 15, 2012, resulting in a four-game suspension for Lawrie after he threw his batting helmet into Miller.
Johnson ejected John Gibbons in 2008 for arguing a call at first base.
Jacoby's two career ejections were at the hands of Dale Ford (1987) and Greg Gibson (2009).