Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Ejections: Mark Wegner (2, 3)

3B Umpire Mark Wegner ejected Yankees Pitching Coach Larry Rothschild for Unsportsmanlike-NEC in the top of the 7th inning and Yankees Manager Joe Girardi for arguing a check swing call in the bottom of the 9th inning of the Yankees-Red Sox game. Prior to the Rothschild ejection, with none out and none on, Yankees batter Francisco Cervelli took a 0-0 fastball from Red Sox pitcher John Lackey for a hit by pitch. Both benches and bullpens cleared as a result of the hit by pitch. Replays indicate, as both teams were ushered back to their dugouts, that Rothschild displayed demonstrative and unsporting behavior, the call was correct.* Prior to the Girardi ejection, with two out and one on, Red Sox batter Jarrod Saltalamacchia took a 0-1 cutter for a hit by pitch while having checked his swing. Replays indicate that Saltalamacchia was unable to check his swing and made an attempt to swing, the call was incorrect.^ After review, it was determined that Saltalamacchia was not attempting to hit when he was touched by the pitched ball, the call is now correct.^ At the time of the Rothschild ejection, the Yankees were leading, 4-2. At the time of the Girardi ejection, the Yankees were leading, 5-2. The Yankees ultimately won the contest, 5-2.

These are Mark Wegner (47)'s second and third ejections of 2011.
Mark Wegner now has 12 points in the Umpire Ejection Fantasy League (4 Previous + 2 MLB + 2 Correct Call + 2 MLB + 2 Correct Call = 12).
Mark Wegner is owned as a Primary Umpire by cyclone14, who is now tied for 4th place in the UEFL with 25 points.
Mark Wegner is owned as a Primary Umpire by SPballsandstrikes, who is now in 11th place in the UEFL with 18 points.
Mark Wegner is owned as a Primary Umpire by KTurner14, who is now tied for 22nd place in the UEFL with 10 points.
Mark Wegner is owned as a Secondary Umpire by zcr57, who is now tied for 15th place in the UEFL with 15 points.
*This call is correct under UEFL Rule 6.b.ii.e.
^Quality of Correctness was challenged and overturned ("Incorrect" ==> "Correct").

These are the 177th and 178th ejections of 2011.
This is the 87th Manager ejection of 2011.
These are the 40th and 41st ejection of August 2011.
This is Joe Girardi's second ejection of 2011.
This is Larry Rothschild's first ejection as Yankees Pitching Coach.
These are Mark Wegner's first ejections since returning from his May 28th calf injury and subsequent surgery.

Wrap: Yankees at Red Sox 8/30/11 Wrap
Video (Rothschild Ejection): Rothschild ejected after benches clear
Video (Girardi Ejection): Saltalamacchia hit by Rivera's pitch


Anonymous said...

Wegner was off of his game.

Rapuano was worse, and no one had an issue with it until after the game. He had 53 called strikes, but 43 accurately called strikes for a percent ratio of 81% (Source: PitchFx)

Rapuano was inconsistent all night long, but the pitches he was calling to left-handed batters on the outside corner were ridiculously outside, especially in the last inning.

Brian said...

Adrian Gonzalez: "Went in with a game plan to see some pitches and right off the bat took a fastball that was off the plate away and it was called [a strike]."

"I feel like Ed's a good umpire, but tonight he was calling pitches off the plate away to lefties and it made it much tougher."

Lowrie's AB was a joke, too.

Gonzalez 1st Inning Plot - http://bit.ly/qEjrhO

Jeremy Dircks said...


The strike two call during Gonzalez's 1st inning at bat would have been ruled correct.

Anonymous said...

We've been over this Kulpa rule time and time again. Pitch #2 is a strike. Good call. Do people just not read the rule book any more? A pitch is a strike if the very edge of the ball is touching the very edge of the plate. The graph's plot is a thin dot about one inch in diameter. The ball is about three inches in diameter. That's why it looks out (it is centered out), but the edge of the ball is indeed touching the edge of the plate. It's a strike all day. Good call.

Anonymous said...

How was Mark off his game exactly?

Anonymous said...

Mark made a good call on the check swing. Remember, even if you think the batter did attempt at the pitch, once the ball hits his arm it's dead. The swing, if at all came after, and could have been as much of a recoil reaction as it could have been a swing.

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

No way is that a swing. Challenge. Saltalamacchia started his swing but was obviously trying to protect himself from not getting hit and then his bat continued around a little with his body after he got hit. He never even broke his wrists. If Wegner would have called that on a Yankee hitter Girardi would have been ejected for sure! Common sense, the swing isn't just judged by the bat, he did not attempt to hit the ball, he started, but then attempted to get his hands out of the way. What would you do if a 90 mph ball was thrown at your hands? Not an easy call, but the right call

Anonymous said...

Agree 100%.....no swing. He may have started his swing, but he stopped it and then just tried to get his hands and body out of the way. He did not attempt to swing at the ball thrown at his hands, he actually did what he is supposed to do and attempt to not get hit by it! Girardi was just mad that Wegner didn't take any crap from his pitching coach earlier in the game. Good call!

Brian said...

I was familiar with the Kulpa rule... posted that to be more objective than subjective.

Anonymous said...

According to pitchFx, Rapuano called strikes on 17 pitches out of the zone, 16 of them were for Yankees pitchers. He called 4 pitches in the zone balls, all of them for Red Sox pitchers.

It was the most one-sided I have ever seen for such a strike zone chart.

Agree with the others that Saltalamacchia only swung through the zone after he had been hit, so Wegner's call should have been ruled correct.

Anonymous said...

I watched the game; Rapuano called those pitches all night, and was more of a hitters umpire than anything last night. I thought both Wegner and Rapuano handled the situations that were dealt to them with class, and I thought both ejections were warranted.

Anonymous said...

The ball hits him before he makes an attempted swing. This call is correct.

UIC FGF said...

He was in the act of swinging when he was hit by the pitch. Dead ball .Strike 2. The act of swinging cannot stop instantly and start the act of attempting to avoid the pitch in the same instance.If the ball had not hit him then he obvioulsy would have been attempting to hit the ball and would have been ruled as such. Tough call but wrong on all counts. Judgement call so tough to argue with the ump on the field.

uic fgf said...

Anonymous: the ball hits him while in the act of attempting to hit the ball and the only reason he stopped his swing is because he is hit by the pitch. Latin ruling is fieri facis. He caused himself to be hit by the pitch by his own actions.

Anonymous said...

Since when can't a hitter stop his swing and try to avoid being hit? A swing is not just determined by how far the bat goes. It is whether the hitter attempted to hit the ball. He started his swing like all check swings start, then he was hit by the pitch, the only reason the bat went around a little was because he was trying to get out of the way. Why would you reward the pitcher for throwing a ball right at the hitter? Strike two...that would have been a bad call and an ejection of Francona.

Anonymous said...

Why reward a batter who was definitely attempting a swing and the only thing that stopped him was putting his body into the ball because he swung. This is clear as day, a swing and a strike. No hit by pitch. Same people here calling this a no swing are the ones that say a flinch is a swing. Nope a swing is a swing is a swing.

UIC FGF said...

Anonymous said:
"He started his swing like all check swings start, then he was hit by the pitch,".
He was hit while swinging. This is my point exactly. Thanks for clarifying for the others.

Anonymous said"the only reason the bat went around a little was because he was trying to get out of the way".
The bat was already in motion which was caused by the batter attempting to strike the ball. The only thing that i saw that stopped him from hitting the ball with the bat was his own stupidity for attempting to hit an inside high and tight fastball.I have never had to decide if a bat went around a little was because a batter was trying to avoid a pitched ball. I have not seen a batter ever swing at a pitch as a method of avoiding getting hit by a pitch.

There is no evidence that i see in any angle of the play that shows he was trying to stop his swing until he was hit by the pitch.

Anonymous said:"Why would you reward the pitcher for throwing a ball right at the hitter?"
I most likely would have called that pitch a ball had the batter not gotten hit by the pitch in the first place since it was not in the strike zone, but i would not reward the batter in this case for swinging at a pitch that is on track to hit him. Stupid batter. That play is exactly why the rule is in the book in the first place. He was fooled by an obviously superior player (the pitcher) and was actively trying to hit a ball coming right at him.

Es Todo Amigo.

Sean said...

I want to be the first student to attend the MWSEM which is short for the Mark Wegner School of Ejection Mechanics. However, if I tried to toss someone like he does, I'd separate my shoulder. Best EJ mech in the game.

Anonymous said...

Sean, your right, and I bet Mark will have his arm in a sling tonite. Luckily he was at 3rd in this game, and now gets to rotate to 2nd. If he had to rotate to the plate next, it would be the tightest zone all year, there's no way he could raise his arm. Mark would have to do a Ken Kaiser.

Anonymous said...

I think that just by how late the swing was shows that the batter was NOT attempting to swing at the pitch. Unless you can honestly believe that an MLB player would swing at a pitch that late. It is clear that once the ball got on top of him, he slowed the swing down to the point of checking it before the ball got there. His momentum is going forward and to his his right towards 1st base. So even if he checks it successfully, it's natural for him to keep turning to his right to check the swing.

Think about it this way. I would let the batter turn to his right, all the way around with his back to the pitcher with the bat in his hand, and not call it a strike. The bat would have to go through or over the plate, but it's clearly no attempt to swing. It's an attempt to get out of the way, with an object in your hand. Try it yourself, it's hard to do. It's more likely that in a normal life situation that the object would be dropped in the attempt to get out of the way. Batters are trained to drop the bat after they hit the ball, so its an unnatural act for them, to drop the bat during the pitch. So it's going to look funny, always, when a batter is getting out of the way with a bat in his hand.

Good call by Mark.

Anonymous said...

I think he wanted to test out the hook and see if he still had it after the surgery. Larry was in the wrong place at the wrong time. Mark: 'Man I want to hook somebody, see if I've still got it.' What? What Larry? U talkin to me? BOOM! (Walking back to 3rd base... 'oh yeah I still got it!'

Anonymous said...

Too many posts to read. But, this is not a right or wrong answer. Believe it or not, there are calls in baseball that literally can be called either way and be correct. This is one of them. Nearly every single major league batters is in the "act" of hitting once the pitcher starts his windup. How? By either moving their hands back, lifting bat off shoulder, moving their feet, etc. So the whole "in the act", I don't feel is valid. My take is this, if the ball hitting the batter makes "his bat" move past the point of half-swing, then no swing. But if the umpire, felt the batter was going to swing at that pitch and was subsequently HBP, then its a swing.

Lindsay said...

This ruling has been challenged.

After review, the Quality of Correctness has been overturned. Reason for Ejection has been upheld. The call is now correct.

After review, including examination of the real-time play, replays, and alternate angles, the decision of overturning the original Quality of Correctness was made. In regards to the batter failing to avoid the pitch/leaning into the pitch, this is not the 3B Umpire's concern. The appeal the 3B Umpire is tasked to rule upon is whether or not the batter attempted to hit the pitch using the standard criteria designated by Rule 2.00 Strike (a pitch which is "struck at by the batter and is missed"); the call and subsequent ejection are considered on this point and this point alone. As such, the appeal for Reason for Ejection under UEFL Rules 6.b.vii. & 6.c.x. is denied and the Reason for Ejection upheld.

Rule 6.08(b) specifies the batter is entitled to first base when "he is touched by a pitched ball which he is not attempting to hit." Rule 6.08(b) also specifies a pitched ball is dead when the ball touches the batter, whether or not he is entitled to first base. Therefore, the ball is dead upon contact. The rules do not declare an umpire must cease judgement on an attempt when the ball becomes dead; the umpire is entitled to use the actions of the batter both before, during, and after the ball is dead, to determine whether or not the batter attempted to hit the pitch. To "strike" is to "hit deliberately" or on purpose. Therefore, to attempt to strike, as specified by Rule 2.00, is to try and hit a pitched ball on purpose. As prescribed by 6.08(b), the batter is entitled to first base when he is touched by a pitched ball which he is not attempting to hit. In the present, the batter does not appear to be attempting to hit the pitch when he is touched; the call of no swing is correct.


Anonymous said...

Awesome reversible! Thanks for taking the input.

Anonymous said...

Gil, the review and overturn is great. The explanation is even better. Thanks

Anonymous said...

"Anonymous said...

Too many posts to read. But...."

Dude, if your not even going to read the posts and then try and add to the conversation.....

why even post then?

Might want to find out if the point your going to make has been said already, or already shown to be a false premise.

Anonymous said...

I read all remarks, tough challange decision, but in the end it is the correct reversal, good job.

UIC FGF said...

The only reason that he was hit by the pitch was because his attempt to strike the ball put him in postion to be hit. The pitch was just a little above the belt and may have been a little inside but his momentum from HIM attempting to hit the ball was why he was in that position to begin with.I would equate this to a batter that sticks out a knee or an elbow and then is "hit" by the pitch. HE caused it and i would never allow him to go to first base. I would like to see the pitch FX of this pitch as well. Where was it when it the batter got in the way?

Very tough call, all judgement, 59% agree with anonymous the other 41% are correct.

Good umpires put him on first, great umpires rule correctly and leave him in the box with a call of strike.

Anonymous said...

Replying to "1152pm" : I read most, I got the gist, just didn't read every word.....relax. Sounds like you a lil upset the called was changed to "correct".... It is a great play for discussion that I feel was broken down very well by the UEFL management.

Cricket said...

I believe "check swings" should be at the top-of-the list for the "UEFL summit" after the season.

I personally say Salty attempted to strike the ball. In this case, judgment of the umpire must prevail, however, because there is no definitive measure to determine the quality of the call.

Anonymous said...


Not upset the call was changed to correct. I agree with the decision.


Are you saying the batter did something different from what he did on the previous pitch? If you are then I agree with you. But if the batter set up in the same position he always does, and if it was the same as the last pitch, and if his stride was the same as usual, then the variable would have to be the pitch location, and not the batter's fault.

According to what people are saying here, the batter should have immediately bailed out on the pitch after it left the hand. He's not allowed to start his stride at the ball, when a pitch is that far inside.
Also, those of you saying it was the batter who put himself in position to get hit, then the umpire should have, by rule, left him at the plate.
I really cannot see how that would be the correct outcome.
You must, as a batter, offer at a pitch 1st before the ball hits you for it to be a dead ball and a strike. Or at the very least, the umpire must determine if the batter was attempting at the pitch, when it hit him. In this case it's clear, at the time the ball hit the batter, there was no swing.

Anonymous said...

I fail to see how this was changed to a correct call. Batter clearly swung, getting hit before the swing was completed does not change the fact that the bat clearly went through the zone, strike. He never attempts to twist out of the way causing the bat to go through the zone, the bat went through the zone because he ACTUALLY SWUNG

Anonymous said...


I think the ruling was correct, and fair.

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