Monday, June 13, 2011

Ejections: John Tumpane (1, 2)

HP Umpire John Tumpane ejected Rays Manager Joe Maddon and pitcher David Price for arguing an out call in the top of the 7th inning of the Rays-Tigers game. With one out and three on, Rays batter Casey Kotchman flied out to Tigers right fielder Magglio Ordonez on a 3-2 fastball. Rays R3 Justin Ruggiano was ruled out at home, Ordonez to Tigers catcher Alex Avila. Replays indicate that Avila did not touch Ruggiano on his swipe tag attempt before Ruggiano touched the plate, the call was incorrect.* At the time of the ejection, the Tigers were leading, 1-0. The Tigers ultimately won the contest, 2-1, in 10 innings.

These are John Tumapne (74)'s first and second ejection of 2011.
John Tumpane now has -4 points in the Umpire Ejection Fantasy League (0 Previous + 3 AAA + -1 Penalty + -4 Incorrect Call + 3 AAA + -1 Penalty + -4 Incorrect Call = -4)
John Tumpane was undrafted in 2011.
*Quality of Correctness was challenged and confirmed ("Incorrect" => "Incorrect")

These are the 73rd and 74th ejections of 2011.
This is the 39th manager ejection of 2011.
This is the 33rd player ejection of 2011.
This is Joe Maddon's third ejection of 2011.
David Price did not participate in this contest.
These are John Tumpane's first and second career ejections.

Wrap: TB @ DET 6/13/11 Wrap
Video: Maddon is Ejected by Tumpane
Video (2): Alternative Angle


Cricket said...

What a difficult call. I agree with the incorrect QoC, but I understand how and why Trumpane missed it.

tmac said...

This was a really horrible game called by John... when you miss 25 pitches including missing almost 20 strikes (18 to be precise) it proves that you're just not ready. This play is wide open and it's hard to imagine what he's looking at. The foot covers home plate and he is not tagged until the foot is pushed off home plate by the catcher.. I think the Detroit announcer said it best right before they went to commercial when he said "ewwww"

Bob4CrewChief said...

Mike Everitt supported Tumapne:

Crew chief Mike Everitt stood behind the call Trumpane made.

"In his judgment, he believed [Ruggiano] was tagged out before he touched the plate," Everitt said. "In his judgment, he was out. He did a great job. That was a tough game. I'm very proud of him."

Anonymous said...

I watched this game and I think John called a great game! Anyone that says that this play was wide open must not have ever umpired in their life. He was in perfect position to make the call, and he must have thought the initial swipe tag got the runner. For a relatively new umpire in MLB, I think he has a very bright future ahead of him. And his ejection mechanic was AWESOME! Nice job, John. Welcome to the SHOW!!! Keep it up kid.

Dan said...

I think the call speaks for itself. I'm not gonna pile on a vacation replacement ump. It's a tough position to be put in. It's admirable for Mike Everitt to stick up for him.

That's the first time I've seen Tumpane, and wow, does he look young.

Jeremy Dircks said...

Tumpane is 27 years old, he's out of the Pacific Coast League.

Anonymous said...

@tmac, how can you say that was horrible call and judge whether a guy is ready for the big leagues. Unless you have been there, and I assume you haven't if you are posting on here and bashing him the way you are, then you can't say that was a horrible call or say that "he's not ready." You are failing to realize that the runner has "TWO" feet. John may have thought the swipe tag caught the heel of the foot that was tucked underneath him. Either way, a very tough call, hands down.

Anonymous said...

You know, folks, I am pretty certain he missed it, but the aletrnate angle view sure makes it look like he may have been right...the front leg is bent, doesn't appear to get the plate, and a swipe is made at the rear of a play. What are you doing sending a runner on Orodonez' arm on a shallow fly?

Anonymous said...

I agree with the previous Anon poster (and no, I'm not the same person...). Tumpane is in great position, has good timing, makes the call he thought he saw and then stays with it. He doesn't get help, he doesn't waffle and he doesn't back down when Maddon comes out to argue. Did he get it right? No, but it wasn't egregious, it was split second close and had Tumpane gotten a step to his left, he may have seen the miss on the swipe more clearly but, doubtful.

While I'm not crazy about him looking at the runner and then calling the runner out, I think it was more a function of timing and an easy way to manage timing than anything else. Again, it's a little tweak vs. a major miss.

Heck, if I were Tumpane, I would have probably told Maddon that he could go grab some 'f#%king' bench (repeatedly) since Maddon had no way of seeing that call, period.

His plot wasn't great, true, but like others have said, for a replacement umpire looking at that pitching, he was at least consistently missing and can adjust. Heck, there are plenty of umpires who've been in the league longer who have at least that level of accuracy or worse.

Welcome to the bigs, John. You've got a bright future.

Anonymous said...

I looked at the Pitch F/X and, to me, it looks no different than the plots of many games. He likes pitches just off the plate and is reluctant to call the pitch that looks low to everyone in the world with the exception of Pitch F/X (see the way the catcher handled the pitch that led to Porter's ejection of Manuel -- yes, it caught the knee, but it's also routinely called a ball).

As for the call, I had to look at a number of replays to determine that he, indeed, made the wrong call. Madden is pretty much a clown, so he actions don't surprise me regardless of the accuracy of the call.

It's admirable, indeed for Everitt to go out of his way to make sure a new replacement call-up didn't end up under the bus. Good job, IMO, filling in as the crew chief.

tmac said...

I love the rational of this missed call... let's look at some quotes and you guys wonder why people hate umpires. His strike zone was bad b/c "the pitch that looks low to everyone in the world with the exception of Pitch F/X "

last week the announcers said the same thing and they DESERVEDLY were blasted on this site.

i'll continue: "What are you doing sending a runner on Orodonez' arm on a shallow fly"

WOW.. we need to get calls right. not worry about what teams are doing

"Maddon is a clown"

SO that makes it ok to miss a call?? What is wrong with you guys? A total lack of respect for people... Madden averaged just over 3 EJs a year coming into this season. THAT makes him a clown??? I feel as though you guys are way to bipartisan. Umpires are not right 100%.

Is there any way to prove the 3 anon posts saying pretty much the same thing are the same person Jeremy?

That all being said... John is a great guy and may very well have a bright future... Bring him back late in the season and let him work some royals/A's games to get his feet under him.

Jon Terry said...;_ylt=ApE_Astu8fmMofaiptN.ahoRvLYF?urn=mlb-wp9413

A Big League Stew post on this play. He wants instant replay, and umpire interviews post-game.

I love the line where the runner says he didn't feel a tag. That's so little league it's hilarious.

This was a tough call, and it's calls like this that show why it's tough to do the job. We all have instant replay, over and over, sitting in comfy chairs at our computers. Tumpane has one shot, hot and sweaty, at full speed. It it's close enough that we need the instant replay to be sure, then we need to back off of him.

ump_24 said...

Anyone know if this was his first MLB dish?

Pretty sure he's new to the call up roster.

Let's stick any of us back there for an MLB plate - let alone our first - betcha at least 50% of us would yack in the locker room before the game out of nervousness.

I think he had F2 tagging R3 when in reality he missed the swipe tag. If you want to dissect his mechanics / positioning on this one, he was too stationary. As the throw was coming in and he was reading that the catcher is going to first have to block R3 off the plate and then swipe tag his back, he should've been moving to his right (to his left would put him in the way of the carnage of the collision). All he needed to do was change the angle a little bit to see that swipe, and he would've been fine. I betcha that was his first observation once he cued up the play in the locker room after.

I'm no lip reader specialist, but I thought he did an above average job handling the aftermath of the call.

That's a tough play no matter how you split it up. No need to pile on the PU here.

Anonymous said...


I posted one of the anonymous comments. I am a participant in the league, but I can't be bothered to make an account just to post here.

My post was the one talking about the Manuel ejection (Pitch F/X is great inside and outside, but I think it's terrible up and down, especially down) and I also called Maddon a clown.

Maddon's actions, I'd guess, were exaggerated because the plate guy was a call-up possibly working his first dish in MLB. Classy the way he didn't see the play, ran out of the dugout, and flapped his arms around and went crazy.

And I'm not posting as anonymous to hide my identity. I'm RichMSN. The other posts are not mine, not that it's really any of your concern.

tmac said...

John worked six games late last season including two plate jobs.... He's been up this year, but not precisly sure how many plates he's worked

clement30 said...

This is why people call for instant replay, plays like these. But guess what: THE UMPIRES ARE JUST AS MUCH A PART OF THE GAME AS THE PLAYERS. And if that game, that call decided a pennant race, GOOD! The umpires are part of baseball just as they players are. Baseball would not be complete without it's umps. And when umps blow a call and all the fans start going crazy again, I just tend to remind them. Hey, automated players would get a hit 100% of the time too, how'd ya like that?

clement30 said...

@ump24: He filled in for awhile on the Scott (5) crew. Also, I think what Evritt did in this situation proves my point that he is one of MLB's best.

Anonymous said...

He worked the plate on May 28th for the Reds @ Braves. IIRC, he had a pretty brutal night calling balls and strikes in that game.

Bill said...

Watch the alternate angle video starting at 1:40 and pause it at 1:44. I am not so sure the kid didn't get it right...the tag appears to swipe the rear foot as the front foot that came in high and to the runner's right is not on the plate. Very, very close play.

Jeremy Dircks said...

Remember, the plots on Brooks that the y-axis (the vertical bounds of the strike zone) are not static, so I'd be careful to characterize the calls close to those bounds as incorrect. Also, recall Gil's write up on the Ron Kulpa ejection. The most accurate way to look at the data is the raw numbers, rather than the graph at itself. So Tumpane may have not missed as many as you'd think.

Just something to think about.

tmac said...

@ Jeremy.. While I buy that arguement for called strikes outside of the box... It's hard to make that arguement with ball calls inside the box by Brooks baseball (say that 5 times fast)... if you want to have a more in depth discussion let me know...

@ Anon: on may 28th John actually did a VERY good job calling balls and strikes he missed five balls inside the Brooks box.... not including the ones on the line or adjacent to it.... that was a much better performance... When guys get called up they have to be able to call strikes and missing upwards of 20 strikes will result badly.

Ruben "Eaniol" Pineda said...


After looking at the alternative angle I can say with absolute certainty that Tumpane's eyes saw a no-tag on the swipe by the catcher.

I also see his eyes see a tag with R3's left foot off of the plate.

But, between that, there is a tag of home by R3 with his left foot.

Jon Terry said...

Actually, while not perfect to the box on the graph, I do think that his strike zone was fairly consistent. He seems to like the outside pitch a bit, and he doesn't favor down and in. Something we are all taught along the way is to be consistent. We all have heard, at one time or another, "Call it both ways Blue!" Judging from the graph, Tumpane called it both ways.

Dave D said...

@tmac - I'm the second Anonymous poster. I think my comments were clear and echoed by others.

I did incorrectly suggest he should move to his left (Thanks, ump_24) because, frankly, I wasn't looking at the video at the time I typed the response (I watched it before) and errantly thought Ruggiano had slid on the other side, hence my suggestion on Tumpane moving to the angle "left" to get the best look possible once the play/swipe tag was in progress. Apologize for the confusion on my part.

I didn't say and don't advocate that umpires are perfect, nor are they without fault. My suggestions here indicated that Tumpane was not without fault either.

I did say that Tumpane was positioned well initially, could have improved it slightly, was consistent in his plate calling during the game and on par with other umpires far more senior and experienced at this level. I'm not sure where to find fault in those items but, fire away.

I also said that Tumpane has a bright future in the league, and I stand by it. It's my hope that he reviews the video and data, sees opportunities to improve his game and takes them. Hopefully, he'll set the example for others (...and ones that we all know should) to follow.

I also forgot, frankly, that you could login with a Google account. It's rectified now.

Hope that helps.

Jeremy Dircks said...


you are definitely correct. I was just giving people a reminder about pitch f/x. Your points are certainly valid though.

Dave D.,

Thanks for contributing. Looks like we are having some good discussions here. Glad we are not having too many personal jabs. Obviously anybody is free to post as anonymous, as we have that option to allow people to do so. It is nice though to see some particular names/screen names on the comment section, but we enjoy the contributions.

Everyone included.

tmac said...

I see quade is up to his usual craziness...

he's really good at yelling

Jeremy Dircks said...


Thanks. Write up is posted.

Lindsay said...

@tmac, In regards to characterizing borderline ball calls as correct (a green dot that, say, is half inside the box), that has more to do with pitch f/x's margin of error of approximately one inch or .083 feet. Using the "Kulpa Standard," we started off with the following ranges around a working strike zone of (-.953, +.953).

Abs 0.000-0.900 = Strike
Abs 0.901-1.000 = Borderline
Abs 1.000+ = Ball

Borderline pitches are generally always ruled correct. We operate on the default = correct theory. With no evidence to suggest the call is wrong, we leave it as correct. That's why you might see a pitch at 0.901, ruled a ball, given a QOC of Correct. It accounts for the working strike zone, pitch f/x margin of error, and the UEFL Rules and spirit in regards to erring on the side of correctness.

Anonymous said...

I chuckle at guys like tmac who have probably never had to take that play at the plate....just shaking my head.

Anonymous said...

I think someone should challenge the correctness of the call of incorrect.

There were 2 tags made on this play.

If, Gil "R.O." or whoever makes the correctness decisions, said that the incorrectness is based upon the very end where the lead foot is touching the plate, the one that completely passed over the plate the first time, on that very last tag, then the call being incorrect should stand. This fact of the call being incorrect should state that it is incorrect based on the very last tag made.

However, if the call by Tumpane is being made from what happened earlier, when the lead foot is completely in the air above the plate and the catcher is tagging at the back foot that has not made the plate due to the catcher blocking the foot, then there is not enough information to tell from any angle that the catcher "did not" in fact touch that back foot when you look at all the angles when the glove is down at the ground level where it could have touched that back foot. We can clearly see the glove in the air before the tag and clearly see it in the air after the tag on the back foot but there is not enough clarity to tell at the moment the glove is on the ground where it could have tagged the foot, that it did or did not touch the foot. The only person who could probably see that was Tumpane and even then he could have missed by an inch or two that is not shown in any of these slow mows, if you click the start stop real fast. Upon further review the call of out should stand as correct as rendered by the umpire and therefor is the correct call without any clear refutable evidence if the decision is rendered by the first tag made. The catcher may have made the 2nd attempt because he was afraid Tumpane did not see the first one or of course he could have been making it because he missed the first one. No one knows. We do not know, unless someone here called Tumpane, that the call he made was based on the 1st or 2nd tag. However, the person in charge here should have clarified which tag attempt they were using in making the judgment of a correct call or incorrect call.

Anonymous said...

U Know I agree with the previous post the play should be challanged therefore I challange the quality of correctness and think it should be deffered incorrect to inconclusive at best u can not tell weather the original tag gets reggiuano or if he is tagged only after crossing home plate and yes Tumpane is a great young umpire he as done two of the rockies series and done really well in both of them.

Lindsay said...

This ruling has been challenged.

After review, the Quality of Correctness has been confirmed. The call is now incorrect.

After review, including examination of the real-time play, replays, and alternate angles, the decision of confirming the original Quality of Correctness was made. After review, it is clear no tag was applied until after the runner had legally contacted home plate.


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