Saturday, July 14, 2012

Ejection 087: Dale Scott (3)

3B Umpire Dale Scott ejected Mets Manager Terry Collins for arguing a safe (reversed) call in the bottom of the 5th inning of the Mets-Braves game. With one out and one on, Braves batter Jason Heyward hit a 1-0 knuckleball from Mets pitcher R.A. Dickey on a pop fly to left field, where LF Jordany Valdespin attempted a sliding catch as the ball dropped toward the grass. Initially ruled a catch and double play, the umpires conferred and reversed the call to a single. Replays indicate the ball was trapped, but R1 Martin Prado was tagged while off his base, the call was incorrect.* The call is now correct.^ At the time of the ejection, the contest was tied, 3-3. The Braves ultimately won the contest, 8-7.

This is Dale Scott (5)'s third ejection of 2012.
Dale Scott now has 6 points in the UEFL (2 Previous + 2 MLB + 2 Correct Call = 6).
Crew Chief Dale Scott now has 6 points in the UEFL's Crew Division (5 Previous + 1 Correct Call = 6).
*After review, this ruling has been deferred by the UEFL Appeals Board (3-3-1).
^After exhaustive review, Quality of Correctness has been reversed by the UEFL Appeals Board (4-3).
*Historical Appeals Board decisions may be consulted via the UEFL Portal.*

UEFL Standings Update
Prop 2-1/Post-ASG 7-14-12 (2pts) Awarded to: Heyblue, RadioPearl, Turducken, TXWrangler, zcr57
Prop 2-6/Next-3B 7-14-12 (2pts) Awarded to: mbosschaart (7/25/12)

This is the 87th ejection of 2012.
This is the 45th Manager ejection of 2012.
This is Terry Collins' 2nd ejection of the 2012 regular season, he was last ejected April 11th (Larry Vanover; QOC = Correct).
This is Dale Scott's first ejection since June 17th (Doug Brocail; QOC = Correct).
This is the New York Mets' 5th ejection of 2012, first in the NL East.

Wrap: Mets at Braves 7/14/12
Video: Scott rules catch, Prado doubled off at first, tagged by Ike Davis; Umpires confer, reverse out to trap; Scott tosses irate Terry Collins

MLB History: A Familiar Conflict of Interest

Baseball, umpires, conflicts of interest and July 14—all are related, but how?

From Jim Joyce's removal from pitcher Armando Galarraga's games following their co-authoring of Nobody's Perfect: Two Men, One Call and a Game for Baseball History in 2011 to PBUC Executive Director Justin Klemm's controversial banishment of the competing Jim Evans Academy for Professional Umpiring for a bowling party-gone horribly wrong in February 2012, the umpiring conflict of interest is real and plainly apparent—and all sports officials know of and detest hearing about the biggest officiating conflict of interest in professional sports history, basketball's Tim Donaghy fiasco.

Who wants a bobblehead? I do!
Yet of all conflicts of interest, none is as familiar as the famous umpire-player brotherly relationship of Jim and Randy Wolf. Though officially barred from working the plate for his brother's games, Jim served as home plate umpire during a Spring Training contest in 2008 that featured brother Randy on the mound. It didn't help, though, as Randy's Padres lost to the Milwaukee Brewers, 6-2. Randy himself surrendered three runs in as many innings pitched.

In 2003, Jim, then a Triple-A call-up umpire, officiated a Marlins-Dodgers series while brother Randy was on the Philadelphia Phillies, who were competing with the Marlins for the NL wild card. Succinctly, the Phillies were rooting for Florida to lose and Los Angeles to win.

Marlins lefty Mark Redman used this fact to imply an ulterior motive behind some of Jim's California calls while Randy was in Philly: "I guarantee that crosses every player's mind." Crew chief Larry Young defended Jim: "He doesn't perceive it to be a problem, and I do not, either."

Good news, too, considering—again—Jim was working a game 3,000 miles away from his brother, Randy.

Why the discussion? Well, July 14 is a landmark day in the world of family umpiring, for on July 14, 1972, umpire Bill Haller and brother Tom made history. A catcher with the Detroit Tigers, Tom worked in front of Bill during a Tigers-Royals game in what would be the first and only brother ump-catcher game in MLB history.

And if you're wondering about Bill Haller, he is the first base umpire featured and mic-ed up for a classic Earl Weaver argument and ejection during a late-season game—in the top of the first inning, nonetheless.

The following Bill Haller photographs were graciously submitted to the UEFL

Thursday, July 12, 2012

2012 UEFL Prop Predictions: Round Two

Four months ago, the UEFL introduced Prop Predictions, an exciting way to earn League points for the 2012 season. Side wagers as to events that may occur during the upcoming season, the inaugural Prop Board featured seven items, six of which have been completed at this time. For those six, the results are as follows with winners in bold and responses, if not exact, in parentheses:
  1. First Ejection, 2012 Regular Season: 4/8/12; BrooklynUmp, cyclone14, hitit2me, JRD, Spence1222
  2. First Ejector, 2012 Regular Season: Mike DiMuro; none
  3. Date of First non-Plate Umpire Ejection: 4/24/12; nwsquid
  4. Date of Ozzie Guillen's First Regular Season Ejection: 6/26/12; ThePeoplesChamp (5/25/12)
  5. Date of First Ejection of Fighting: 4/14/12; Longballs (4/13/12), mtn335 (4/15/12)
  6. Number of Ejections at the 2012 All-Star Break: 86; zcr57 (87)
  7. End of 2012: Most Ejected Team [pending]
Now that these props are in the books, the UEFL has released Round Two of Prop Predictions, as follows:

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Rules 6.05(j), 7.01 and 7.08(e): Tie Goes to the Runner

Ties and baseball: Which of the following is true? (A) Tie Goes to the Runner, (B) Tie Goes to the Fielder, (C) Tie Goes to the Umpire, (D) Tie Goes to the Rule Book.

Using (D) as our starting point, it is high time to answer one of the most confusing and myth-laden plays in baseball.

During Sam Holbrook's recent ejection of Zack Greinke for spiking a baseball, the issue of "tie" made an appearance as video replay appeared to indicate that pitcher Greienke and batter-runner Jose Altuve's feet contacted the first base bag at approximately the same time.

Though ties are scientifically improbable and instant replay is subject to frame rate error, depending on camera speed (e.g., 24- or 30 frames per second)—which is a large reason why umpires call the most standard plays at first base based on sound, which is prone to a much smaller sampling error due to the properties of auditory frequency—some plays may appear to be ties, and given this error, are assumed to be outright dead heats. This is one of those plays. For the sake of argument, we have an outright tie.

We start our analysis where every officiating review should begin—the Rules Book. During this subsequent examination, we will specifically review Rules 2.00 [Out], 2.00 [Safe], 6.05(j), 6.09(a), 7.01 and 7.08(e).

At this point you might be thinking, "all those rules just for a tie?" Yes, it is absolutely vital for without a thorough analysis of the Rules Book, the principle of "tie" may be misinterpreted.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

2012 MLB All-Star Game Thread

As the National League dominated the American League en route to an 8-0 shutout in this 83rd All-Star Game, this is the UEFL All-Star Game thread, open for all discussion from controversial plays (there were none) in the 2012 Mid-Summer Classic, to pitch f/x analysis or even umpire uniform discussion.

As previously reported by the UEFL, the 2012 All-Star Umpires are:
HP: Gerry Davis -cc (4th)
1B: Jim Joyce (3rd)
2B: Brian Runge (1st)
3B: Tony Randazzo (2nd)
LF: Lance Barksdale (1st)
RF: Brian Knight (1st)

Balls and Strikes as called by HP Umpire Gerry Davis
Total Callable Pitches: 135 / 150 = 90.0% Accuracy
Called Balls: 98 / 107 = 91.6%
Called Strikes: 37 / 43 = < 90.0%

UEFL Appeals Board: 2012 First Half in Review

With MLB's first half in the books, the UEFL Appeals Board releases its biannual report. During phases ii and iii of the UEFL season (Rule 2-1-a), the Appeals Board oversaw 31 appeals, of which one was denied, one was summarily ruled upon and 29 were adjudicated.

Summary Decisions (2)
Denied (1): 012; Certiorari rejected due to untimely challenge. Rule 6-2 requires all appeals be filed during the seasonal phase in which the ejection occurs.
Deferred (1): 040; Reason for ejection summarily deferred from QOC to Unsportsmanlike due to a repeat visit argument (Rule 6-2-b-5-b; the DiMuro Rule). Rules 6-2-g & 6-3-j allow for Reason summary decisions.

Arbitrated Matters (29)
Affirmed (23): 11 Incorrect, 9 Correct, 2 Calling, 1 Irrecusable
Reversed (6): 5 Correct => Incorrect, 1 Incorrect => Correct

Voting Roster and Records


Votes: Total Affirmed: 123 / Total Reversed: 27 / Total Deferred: 4
Abstentions (45): Posted Original Ruling: 28 / Umpire Ownership: 11 / Vacation: 6
Casting Votes (1): 027; Reversed.
Unanimous Decisions (17): 16 Affirmed, 1 Reversed
One-Vote Margin Decisions (4): 1 Affirmed, 3 Reversed (Includes Casting Votes)

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Ejection 086: D.J. Reyburn (3)

HP Umpire D.J. Reyburn ejected White Sox Manager Robin Ventura for arguing a ball call in the top of the 9th inning of the Blue Jays-White Sox game. With one out and none on, Blue Jays batter Jeff Mathis took a 0-0 fastball from White Sox pitcher Hector Santiago for a called first ball. Replays indicate the pitch was located waist high and inside (px of -.984), the call was correct. There were no callable pitches thrown to the preceding batter, Omar Vizquel. At the time of the ejection, the Blue Jays were leading, 11-9. The Blue Jays ultimately won the contest, 11-9.

This is D.J. Reyburn (70)'s third ejection of 2012.
D.J. Reyburn now has 1 point in the UEFL (-4 Previous + 3 AAA + 2 Correct Call = 1).
Crew Chief Derryl Cousins now has 2 points in the Crew Division (1 Previous + 1 Correct Call = 2).
This is the 86th ejection of 2012.
This is the 44th Manager ejection of 2012.
This is Robin Ventura's first ejection since May 30 (Mark Wegner; QOC = Irrecusable).
This is D.J. Reyburn's first ejection since June 4 (Don Mattingly, Trey Hillman; QOC = Incorrect).
This is the White Sox's 5th ejection of 2012, T-second in the AL Central (DET 7; CLE 5; MIN 4; KC 3).