Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Injury: Eric Cooper (Ilness); Umpire Dehydration

An MLB game saw a three-man umpiring crew grow to four after AAA call-up umpire John Tumpane rushed  in from his minor league assignment Monday night in New Orleans, Louisiana to fill in for Eric Cooper in St. Louis, Missouri on Tuesday evening.

MLB Umpire Eric Cooper cools off. Reuters
Tumpane had worked the plate for Monday's Nashville Sounds at New Orleans Zephyrs contest with 1B Umpire Quinn Wolcott and 3B Umpire Brian Sinclair.

On a day in which St. Louis temperatures peaked at 104-degrees with high humidity at 5:05 p.m. local time, Cooper had fallen ill, necessitating the last-minute phone call. Tumpane arrived in the middle of the third inning and assumed the role of third base umpire, sliding Marty Foster to second base. Jeff Kellogg and D.J. Reyburn remained at 1B and HP, respectively.

MLB Umpiring crews have switched from the four-to-three alignment mid-game before, most recently on June 17, when Andy Fletcher broke his wrist following a wild pitch by the Mariners' Brandon League.

Earlier this summer, MLB Director of Umpiring Randy Marsh and fill-in umpire Mike Muchlinski demonstrated the RiteTemp Athletics cooling vest, worn under the home plate umpire's chest protector as one instance in which umpires employ technology to keep cool in excessively warm environments. Muchlinski had worked that day in Cincinnati, where game-time temperatures flirted with the 100-degree mark. Nonetheless, on-field temperatures tend to be much hotter than that box score figure may let on. For instance, during an especially hot series at Cincinnati's Riverfront Stadium in the 1970s, on-field temperatures were measured at over 150 degrees. Riverfront would not convert from AstroTurf to grass for another two decades.

“George Hendrick used to tell us when he played in St. Louis, he used three pairs of shoes,” Marsh said. “He kept two on a big bucket of ice and would change shoes every inning because it was so hot on that turf.”

Still, hot is hot.

On June 16 this year and after ejecting Cardinals manager Mike Matheny during another St. Louis scorcher, HP Umpire Kerwin Danley was unavailable for post-game comments because he was being treated for dehydration and getting IV fluids.

On August 27, 2011, 2B Umpire Bob Davidson was forced to leave the Rockies-Dodgers game after three innings because of dehydration caused by 97-degree temperatures in Los Angeles. After receiving an IV, Davidson attempted to return in the bottom of the seventh inning, but was ultimately advised to stay out of the game by Dodgers trainer Stan Conte, which turned out to be especially beneficial. Had he returned, Davidson would have had to endure two extra innings before the Dodgers walked off with a 7-6 victory.

For tips to beat the heat during the hottest days of summer, consult this Umpire-Empire article, which advises all umpires to drink at least two cups of water or sports beverages two hours before game time, ensuring to continue the liquid intake throughout the contest. For best results, make sure to hydrate as early as the previous day and especially the morning of your game.

Additionally, OfficiallyFit.net has "blown the whistle on all excuses." Consider the following advice:
Pre-Game Hydration
Post-Game Hydration and Recovery
Energy Drinks vs. Sports Drinks

And despite what those Sunday softball competitors may say, beer/alcohol doesn't count and should be avoided.


Anonymous said...

This is why you need instant replay for fair/foul immediately. In a three man crew with the umpires on first and second and the ball hit on the left field line, do you know who has the fair/foul call? The home plate umpire. No big deal in April, but if this were to happen late in September, all you know what would break loose.

Anonymous said...

Yes, this should be your argument for replay (sarcasm inserted here). The one, two or maybe even three games/year that this happens. And yes, its an umpire forum, everyone should know that in this example of yours the HP Umpire would have this call. Thanks for waisting a whole 60 seconds of my life.

Anonymous said...

Can we get a "like" button for Anon 11:40p comment?

MattAB said...

@Anon 10:54, way to find a totally unrelated topic to even further beat that replay drum to death.

Anonymous said...

Take a look at the Officially Fit articles about Pre-Game Hydration
at http://officiallyfit.blogspot.com/2012/06/officially-fit-pre-game-hydration.html and Post-Game Hydration and Recovery
at http://officiallyfit.blogspot.com/2012/07/officially-fit-post-game-hydration-and.html for more information!

Anonymous said...

Looks like Cooper is out again today as Tumpane is at second base in St Louis

Mike said...

St. Louis has had 16 days in the month of July in triple digits. The Cardinals have played quite a few home games in this time as well..

A few weeks ago MLB brought in additional umpires for weekend series..

Anonymous said...

looks like tumpane has the dish today- switched up the rotation...wasn't it foster's turn?

Russ said...

Yes, but Foster worked the Plate on Monday and they do not like to have the same Ump work multiple Plate jobs in the smae series. Not sure why they wouldn't just have had Tumpane enter at second base on Tuesday. Than the rotaion would be the same and Foster would nt work 1st base back to back games.

Anonymous said...

Well, Tumpane couldn't really have entered at 2B Tuesday because he came in the middle of the game.

Russ said...

I understand that,They still could have just put him at second and Foster at third since Foster covered both second and third (depending on the situation and the amount of baseruners). It would have been easy to just move him to third, where he was supposed to be orignally since he worked the plate on Monday.

Anonymous said...

I assume we'll see Cooper back in action for the weekend series, so Tumpane will be back in AAA. Probably wanted to get him plate action while they could.

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