Saturday, November 12, 2016

2016 UEFL Rules Summit Discussion

The Umpire Ejection Fantasy League announces its 2016 Rules Summit, the annual forum for discussion of controversial issues which may have surfaced during the past season and to set forth a framework for rectifying these issues by amending the existing UEFL Rules Book ahead of the 2017 UEFL season.

This discussion thread is an open forum for proposal, discussion and debate of potential rules changes. This thread will remain open through Thursday, November 17, which will provide ample time for the proposal and subsequent discussion of possible rules changes for the 2017 season. If necessitated by certain below decisions, a Summit runoff ballot may be presented after the initial voting closes.

You may propose a rules change by replying in a comment to this post. I will accordingly update the list below to reflect such proposals. Nonmaterial proposed modifications are underlined, deletions are strikeout and material additions are bold. Individual propositions are preceded by the ">>" bullet point symbol.

Rule 1 (Selection of Umpires)
>> 1-1-b. ...Six umpires shall be drafted by each UEFL member in the form of two (2) crew chiefs per Rule 1-2...
ALSO Rule 1-2. Prior to the beginning of the year's regular season, and during the spring training period of the pre-season, each member of the league shall select two MLB crew chiefs to serve as UEFL crew chiefs.
RATIONALE: Proposal affords members opportunity to draft a second crew chief, for a UEFL crew of six.
>> 1-2-b. In the event of injury to the designated crew chief, wherein the chief is officially placed on the Disabled List or on Bereavement, the replacement umpire shall be whoever is appointed by MLB to replace the injured umpire as crew chief or acting crew chief of his MLB crew. This announcement must be public and requested by the affected UEFL member(s) to take effect.
RATIONALE: Adds bereavement as a condition of replacement for events that occur prior to the beginning of the year's regular season (applicable to Crew Division).
>> 1-5. If an umpire injury, bereavement, or significant personnel modification occurs prior to the beginning of the regular season, the Office of the UEFL Commissioner may authorize designated affected members the opportunity to alter their Crew, Primary and/or Secondary Umpires.
RATIONALE: Adds bereavement as a condition of replacement for events that occur prior to the beginning of the year's regular season (applicable to all drafted umpires).
>> 1-5-a. If a significant personnel modification (hiring, firing, release or retirement, except as exempted by Rule 1-4-d) occurs after the pre-season, no UEFL roster may be modified, unless such modification would result in the requesting member losing points in the UEFL Standings as the replacement umpire's score fully (and retroactively) replaces the injured/fired/etc. umpire's score. For instance, Members X, Y, and Z have all drafted identical crews that include Primary Umpires A and B, Secondary Umpires C & D, and Crew Chief E. One week into the season, Umpire A suffers a catastrophic injury. At the time of A's season-ending injury, A has 5 points in the UEFL Standings. Member X requests to replace Umpire A with Umpire F, while Member Y requests to replace Umpire A with Umpire G and Member Z requests replacement of A with H. At the time of this request, F has 4 points in the UEFL Standings, G has 5 points in the UEFL Standings, and H has 6 points in the UEFL Standings. RESULT: Member X's request shall be granted and Member Y/Z's request shall be denied. X's request is legal, as proposed replacement Umpire F has fewer UEFL points than does injured Umpire A; Y and Z's requests are illegal, as proposed replacement Umpires G and H do not have fewer UEFL points than does injured Umpire A at the time of replacement.
APPROVED RULING: If Umpire G subsequently effects an ejection with QOCN, and loses UEFL points such that G now has fewer points than injured Umpire A, Y's request to replace A with G will be granted only if Y files a new request to replace A with G at a time when A's UEFL points are greater than G's.
RATIONALE: Allows a member to replace a significantly injured, fired, or otherwise absent umpire during the regular season, while ensuring that this transaction does not create an unfair advantage for the member requesting such a replacement.
>> 1-6. Members may also draft one manager to complete their crew. Managers shall receive +1 points for an incorrect ejection, +1 points for an overturned Replay Review, and +0 points for all other actions.
RATIONALE: Introduces Manager Division to the UEFL.

Rule 2 (The Season)
>> 2-1-a. The following phases of the season shall be used to organize ejection statistics. Standings and sabermetrics shall be posted at the conclusion of Phases (ii), (iii), and (v) monthly, with Final Standings to be posted at the conclusion of the UEFL season.
(1), (2), (3), (4), (5), and (6) shall be eliminated.
RATIONALE: Eliminates a confusing 'seasonal phases' structure wherein phases were created ambiguously and replaces it with a much easier to understand monthly reporting period.
>> 2-1-a-(2) APPROVED RULING. If Opening Night (one or two games) is in one month and Opening Day (six+ games) is in another, the following month governs. Opening Day is defined as the first calendar day upon which at least half of all teams have played at least one game.
RATIONALE: The concept of an Opening Night with one or two games is no longer accurate to modern schedules, as for a second consecutive season there will be more than two games on the Sunday in which the traditional Opening Night game is held.
SPECIAL VOTING CONSIDERATIONS FOR 2-1-a and 2-1-a-(2) AR: If proposal 2-1-a is approved, proposal 2-1-a-(2) is nullified.
>> 2-5. In the event of an umpire entering the DL or otherwise becoming absent and remaining on the DL absent for the remainder of the season...
RATIONALE: Applies Rule 2-5 to any injured/bereaved/absent umpire, regardless of the reason for vacation.

Rule 3 (Crew Division)
>> 3-3. Each non-incorrect ejection committed by a UEFL crew chief's crew shall result in the addition of one (1) point toward a UEFL member's overall score. Each incorrect ejection under a crew chief's purview shall result in the deduction of one point (-1) from that UEFL score.
RATIONALE: Proposes that crew chiefs should be penalized for incorrect ejection calls, just as the ejecting umpire is.
>> 3-7. Special Events Limitation. Points may not be accrued for crew division during the All-Star Game, any AL/NL Wild Card or Divisional Tiebreaker contest, nor any other non-postseason special event as defined by MLB.
ALSO Rule 2-2-a. The All-Star game counts as 1 additional point for each umpire that appears in that game. The All-Star Game crew chief receives a total of 2 points for this appearance. No points are awarded for ejections are during the All-Star game period.
RATIONALE: Removal of 3-7 allows Umpires to earn ejection and replay review points for events that occur during the All-Star Game, and any additional AL/NL Wild Card or Division Tiebreakers played to determine standings for the postseason (e.g., "Game 163").

Rule 4 (League Scoring)
>> 4-2. QOC component...(3) -4 -6 points for each ejection [QOCN / Calling]...(4) -2 -4 points for each ejection [QOCN / Crewmate].
RATIONALE: Creates a more severe punishment for incorrect ejections such that correct calling = +4 (total) and incorrect call = -4 (total).
>> 4-4. Fill-In umpires that work a minimum of 115 games over the course of the season shall be eligible to receive awards a-e, and g-h.
RATIONALE: Grants Triple-A status umpires eligibility to receive every UEFL award, other than Crew Chief of the Year.
>> 4-4. Postseason Award voting shall be restricted to UEFL members who have drafted umpires.
RATIONALE: Allows only those who have drafted umpires/vested interest to vote for year-end awards.
>> 4-4-b. An umpire recognized as Promising Umpire Noteworthy Umpire of the Year (min. 1 / max. 2 umpires) will receive 3 bonus points.
RATIONALE: Changes title of award to better exemplify this award description, which states: "This Umpire has been dedicated, professional, and has worked hard. Perhaps a rising star, the Promising Noteworthy Umpire of the Year is an umpire to keep an eye on, for an expectation of great things down the line. This award will be given to one or two umpires."
>> 4-4-i. An umpire recognized as Most Declining Umpire of the Year (min. 0 / max. 1 umpire) will receive -1 bonus points.
RATIONALE: Reintroduces "Most Declining Umpire" award for an umpire whose performance has declined or regressed more than any other, without necessarily being the worst in the league.
>> 4-4-j. The Commissioner shall review voting for quality assurance and to prevent spam/manipulation, and may adjust the voting results to account for this. The adjustment may only be made by removal of the entire selection associated with the offending ballot(s).
RATIONALE: Formally states the Commissioner may take measures to reduce fraudulent/manipulative voting by removing from the ballot pool violative ballots that show signs of spam or similar inauthentic properties, including but not limited to clear duplicates (identical ballots filed within a very short amount of time of each other) and multiple voting by the same user. May impose a restriction that restricts individual users from voting more than once.
>> 4-5. In the interest of fairness, all responses may, at sole discretion of the Commissioner, shall remain in moderation (screened or invisible) until the submission period has closed. Case plays will be worth a maximum of however many points are specified in the “Case Play: __” post.
RATIONALE: Requires that all Case Plays remain in moderation until completion. Prohibits public discussion until the Case Play submission period has closed.
>> 4-8. Waiver. UEFL members may voluntarily waive points they would otherwise ordinarily be entitled to, excluding ejection and replay-related points.
RATIONALE: Codifies a decision from CP 2014-4 in which a member waived Case Play points.
>> 4-8 (or 4-9). Commissionner or designee may award +1 points with a maximum of five awarded points weekly for contributions to the community that go above and beyond the scope of necessity.
RATIONALE: Authorizes Commissioner to award points for discussion or contributions.

Rule 5 (Statistics)

Rule 6 (Challenges and Appeals)
>> 6-2-b-5. The Quality of Correctness for all ejections for reasons of Fighting, Throwing At, Unsportsmanlike Conduct-NEC, or Excess Contact shall be adjudged as "Irrecusable" by default, unless there is clear and convincing evidence to suggest otherwise; however, proving "Incorrect" status for Fighting, Throwing At, Unsportsmanlike Conduct-NEC, or Excess Contact is extremely difficult. Ejections for Throwing At shall be judged as Correct, and ejections for throwing equipment shall be judged individually with no such default status.
RATIONALE: Proposal would make Throwing At ejections QOCY by default.
>> 6-2-b-5. The Quality of Correctness for all ejections for reasons of Check Swings...shall be adjudged as "Irrecusable" by default...[Editorial Change would then eliminate 6-2-b-5-c. Ejections for the reason of “Check Swing” shall, automatically, be referred to the UEFL Appeals Board for QOC determination. No UEFL Challenge shall be accepted for any such ejection.]
RATIONALE: Proposal adds Check Swings to the list of Reasons for Ejection that would receive QOCU by default.
>> 6-2-b-5-b. Ejections resulting from a Repeat Visit argument (formerly, "DiMuro Rule") of an individual not on the active roster shall receive a QOC associated with the Quality of the call leading to ejection, as in 4-2-b. If, due to the time between the initial call and associated ejection, reason for ejection is in dispute or otherwise unclear, the matter shall be referred to the UEFL Appeals Board, as in 6-1-c. This may be referred to as the "Ripperger Rule."
Approved Ruling: The UEFL Appeals Board shall determine QOC (and ejector classification, if applicable) based on the most probable reason for ejection. If two or more calls are at issue, and these calls possess conflicting QOC or classification values, or if no reason for ejection is most probable, the Board may rule the play Irrecusable (if QOC) or Calling (if Classification).
RATIONALE: Establishes procedure for disputed ejections that may be for an earlier incident.
>> 6-2-b-5-c. The standard for determining whether a Check Swing ruling was correct shall be whether the bat was moving forward as the ball crossed the plate.
RATIONALE: Establishes a specific physical criterion for determining check swing QOC.
>> 6-2-b-6. Quality of Correctness that occurs prior to or during the course of umpire consultation or instant replay review, wherein the initial call was incorrect, and after consultation, the correct call was made, shall be incorrect. Quality of Correctness for all other ejections prior to consultation changed during of after consultation/review, shall be adjudged as correct by the correctness of the initial call; AND
6-2-b-7. Quality of Correctness for an ejection that occurs after umpire consultation or instant replay review, wherein the initial call was correct or incorrect, and after consultation, the initial call was changed to incorrect or correct, changed during or after consultation/review, shall be adjudged as to whether the call after consultation or challenge/review is correct/incorrect by the correctness of the call after consultation/review.
RATIONALE: Brings the wording of the two rules closer. Closes the loophole in which an incorrect call remaining incorrect would still result in QOCY in some circumstances.

Rule 7 (Unresolved Classifications and References)

Rule 8 (Umpire Odds & Ends and Community Issues)
>> 8-1. Comments shall be restricted to members registered with the DISQUS commenting platform.
RATIONALE: Reduces likelihood of spam, violative, and/or trolling comments.

Rule 9 (Unaddressed and Authorized Provisions)

The Rules Summit ballot will also contain a section for re-election/retention of UEFL Appeals Board members who have chosen to sit for re-election during this Rules Summit, as afforded by UEFL Rule 6-4-a-4. Refer to the following link for 2016 UEFL Appeals Board decisions.

Consideration shall be made for the promotion of tmac to Assistant Commissioner.

To review, this is the discussion phase of the 2016 Rules Summit—no voting will take place here. Anyone may propose a rules change by replying to this post through 11/17, at which time the discussion will be closed and all proposals will be officially drafted and voted upon.

Friday, November 11, 2016

2016 UEFL Final Standings and Perfect Crew

With our final award in the books, the Umpire Ejection Fantasy League announces final standings for the 2016 season. The "Perfect Score" this season was 105 while the "Worst Score Possible" was -59.

Perfect Score and Worst Score are calculated using the highest, or lowest, points possible per draft category to form the "Perfect" (highest-scoring) and "Worst" (lowest-scoring) crews.

2016 Perfect Crew: 105 = Jeff Kellogg OR Mike Winters -cc + Pat Hoberg -P1 + Will Little -P2 + Alan Porter -S1 + Sam Holbrook -S2 = 14 + 29 + 24 + 19 + 19 = 105.
2016 Worst Crew: -59 = Fieldin Culbreth -cc + Jerry Meals -P1 + Laz Diaz -P2 + Dan Iassogna -S1 + Lance Barrett -S2 = -11 + -14 + -8 + -14 + -12 = -59.

Jeff Kellogg led the 2016 "Perfect Crew."
UEFL Final Standings (Ties resolved per Rule 5-3)
1) Denny Crane (69 pts).
2) BSBALLUMP (69 pts).
3) fvb6 (64 pts).
4) Arik_G (60 pts).
5) Bigwillystylepa (60 pts).
6) SALjones (56 pts).
7) Big Catch 22 (56 pts).
8) cyclone14 (53 pts).
9) CohenS3 (52 pts).
10) GDK Team Blue, XtremeUmp (51 pts).
12) Bob Abouy, Nasa (50 pts).
14) Blindref757 (49 pts).
15) BkSl14812, dbellyflop (48 pts).
17) Jmatztheump, RolBama24 (47 pts).
19) Qdog915, zebrastripes (46 pts).
21) Bjweig01, HubFlyer, johnnyg08 (44 pts).
24) jdbr78 (43 pts).
25) dtak248, Jeremy407, KTurner14, tjwoelfel13 (42 pts).
29) bwburke94, Conor Stevens (41 pts).
Full Final Standings, points, and results are available via the UEFL Portal: 2016 Standings page.

UEFL Express Final Standings (Umpire Draft Points Only, No Case Plays)
1) BSBALLUMP, Denny Crane (69 pts).
3) fvb6 (64 pts).
4) Arik_G, Bigwillystylepa (60 pts).
6) Big Catch 22, SALjones (56 pts).
8) GDK Team Blue, XtremeUmp (51 pts).
10) cyclone14, Bob Abouy, Nasa (50 pts).

The Rules Summit will begin tomorrow.

2016 UEFL Umpire of the Year - Chris Guccione

Chris Guccione is the UEFL's (Best) Umpire of the Year for 2016 [2015: Alfonso Marquez].
Voting Results (Top 5): Guccione (15%), Hirschbeck (14%), Holbrook (8%), Kellogg/Wolf (7%).

Chris Guccione wins the UEFL Umpire of the Year Award for 2016, which marks his third overall UEFL year-end award (Noteworthy Umpire of the Year: 2011 and 2012). In his 17th overall season calling big league games, 'Gooch' issued two ejections and had seven of his several-thousand calls overturned by Replay Review, which tied for 30th out of 90 umpires in the League (22nd in MLB when adjusting for Triple-A's, who worked a reduced schedule). He capped the year with postseason assignments to the National League Division Series and the 2016 World Series, his first-ever Fall Classic and seventh consecutive postseason (2010-16), where he called balls and strikes for Game 2 and the second-best performance of the seven-Game series, prompting the prognosticative comment, "Guccione may be winning the umpire of the year award with his postseason."

Chris Guccione now has 19 points in the Umpire Ejection Fantasy League (14 Previous + 5 Award = 19).
Final Standings will be released later tonight.

Thursday, November 10, 2016

2016 Ejections of the Year - Joe West & Bob Davidson

Joe West & Bob Davidson had 2016's Best Ejections [2015: Bill Welke & Jim Reynolds].
Voting Results (Top 4): West-159 (23%); Davidson-FAN (16%); Everitt-142|5 (13%); Gorman-006 (9%).

Click here for West/Maddon & video.
Joe West and Bob Davidson were the two umpires with the UEFL's Ejections of the Year for 2016. In Ejection 159 - Joe West (5; Joe Maddon), HP Umpire Joe West ejected Cubs Manager Joe Maddon after enforcing certain pace-of-play procedures pursuant to Official Baseball Rule 5.10(l), which states, "Any attempt to evade or circumvent [the maximum of one mound visit per batter] rule by the manager or coach going to the catcher or an infielder and then that player going to the mound to confer with the pitcher shall constitute a trip to the mound." In the 9th inning, Cubs pitcher Kyle Hendricks surrendered a home run—breaking up a no-hitter and shutout—after which Cubs catcher Miguel Montero visited Hendricks on the mound and returned to home plate. Upon his return to home plate, several Cubs infielders subsequently visited Hendricks on the mound as substitute pitcher Aroldis Chapman began to warm in the bullpen; West attempted to break up the delay and/or charge a mound visit if the meeting was not broken up, pursuant to Rule 5.10(l), leading to Maddon's argument and ejection. Chapman subsequently entered the ballgame.

Click here for Davidson/Fan & video.
In an Unofficial Ejection of a Fan on August 2, Bob Davidson requested the removal of a spectator in Philadelphia after witnessing a purported vulgarity or obscenity, marking the first publicized umpire's request to remove a fan during play since Tim Welke's ejection of a Bryce Harper heckler in 2014. Davidson's request to remove the fan is permissible pursuant to OBR 8.01(b), which states, "Each umpire is the representative of the league and of professional baseball, and is authorized and required to enforce all of these rules. Each umpire has authority to order a player, coach, manager or club officer or employee to do or refrain from doing anything which affects the administering of these rules, and to enforce the prescribed penalties." Accordingly, Davidson was indeed authorized to order Phillies security—a club officer or employee—to remove the fan, whose conduct Davidson had deemed was in contravention of the conduct of a game, in accordance with baseball's rules. After the game, Davidson summed up the crowd's reaction thusly, "I turned around and said, 'You know what, get rid of this guy.'...People cheered me, which is unusual in this town for me." Davidson retired last month after a 28-year Major League career.

Joe West now has 24 points in the Umpire Ejection Fantasy League (23 Previous + 1 Award = 24).
Bob Davidson now has -4 points in the Umpire Ejection Fantasy League (-5 Prev + 1 Award = -4).
The final postseason award, (Best) Umpire of the Year, will be released tomorrow.

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

2016 Noteworthy Umpires - Sam Holbrook & Alan Porter

Sam Holbrook & Alan Porter are 2016's Noteworthy Umpires of the Year [2015: M Carlson & Porter].
Voting (Top 5): Holbrook (12%), Porter (10%), Brian Knight/Paul Emmel (8%), Tripp Gibson (7%).

Sam Holbrook and Alan Porter are the Umpire Ejection Fantasy League's 2016 Noteworthy Umpires of the Year, which is Porter's second consecutive time receiving this award, and Holbrook's first.

Having returned to the field after bereavement in 2014, Holbrook finished 2016 with two ejections, both of Pirates Manager Clint Hurdle (July 3 and July 20) and was selected to the American League Division Series and the 2016 World Series crews, his first Fall Classic since 2010, which included a Game 7 World Series plate assignment, signifying baseball's confidence in Holbrook's plate work according to several commenters. His return to deep October (and early November) was also seen as vindication for two feats of history: the 2000 mass resignation incident, as well as Holbrook's ejection of Mark McGwire during Big Mac's historic home run chase. Holbrook placed 20th in the League in Replay Review percentage (.600 RAP), but was tied for 10th numerically with only six overturned calls. Holbrook is the No. 2 on veteran Gerry Davis' crew, meaning he could be someone to watch as MLB considers crew chief promotions in the future.

When Alan Porter won this very award in 2015, he was said to "represent the 'new guard' of MLB umpires, taking care of business every game." In 2016, Porter's four ejections drew further praise for situation handling, as did his crew chief, Jeff Kellogg, who also placed in the Top 5 for 2016's Honorable Umpires. Porter finished seventh in the League in Replay Review (.667 RAP), and just as he did in 2015, Porter drew a postseason assignment in the 2016 Division Series, where he called the second-highest plate of his NLDS. Porter also promoted from fourth to the number three spot on Kellogg's crew, as John Tumpane joined the big league staff.

Sam Holbrook now has 21 points in the Umpire Ejection Fantasy League (18 Prev + 3 Award = 21).
Alan Porter now has 23 points in the Umpire Ejection Fantasy League (20 Previous + 3 Award = 23).
The next postseason award, Ejection of the Year, will be released tomorrow.

2016 Honorable Umpires - Rob Drake & John Hirschbeck

Rob Drake & John Hirschbeck are 2016's Honorable Umpires of the Year [2015: Hirschbeck & Dale Scott].
Voting Results (Top 5): Drake (17%), Hirschbeck (15%), S Holbrook (8%), T Barrett (7%), J Kellogg (2%).

Rob Drake and John Hirschbeck are the Umpire Ejection Fantasy League's 2016 Honorable Umpires of the Year, which is Hirschbeck's third consecutive time receiving this award, and Drake's first.

Like Hirschbeck and runner-up Sam Holbrook who lost his wife Susie in 2014, Drake endured a significant loss when wife Yvonnka passed away in September, upon which Drake left his crew and returned to Arizona to be with his family; he finished the 2016 season on bereavement. Drake, who compiled one ejection earlier in the 2016 season, drew praise for his situation handling and his ability to calmly walk away from an ejection scenario that had run its course.

Hirschbeck, who announced his retirement in October, was credited with returning to "vintage form" in 2016; his one ejection in 2016 drew stark contrast to seven in 2015, which some attributed to a calmer demeanor and better situation handling that might have contributed to postgame comments made in July in which Hirschbeck admitted his crew erroneously reversed a balk call in Miami.

John Hirschbeck now has 5 points in the Umpire Ejection Fantasy League (3 Prev + 2 Award = 5).
Rob Drake now has 3 points in the Umpire Ejection Fantasy League (1 Previous + 2 Award = 3).
The next postseason award, Noteworthy Umpire of the Year, will be released later tonight.

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

2016 UEFL Award for Best Crew Chief - Ted Barrett

Ted Barrett wins the UEFL's 2016 Crew Chief of the Year Award [2015 Winner: Gary Cederstrom].
Voting Results (Top 3): Ted Barrett (23%), Joe West (13%), Tom Hallion (12%).

Ted Barrett is the Umpire Ejection Fantasy League's 2016 Crew Chief of the Year, which marks his second time winning the Crew Chief of the Year Award; he also won in 2014, and is the first umpire to win this award two times. In his 20th MLB season, Barrett experienced one ejection, that of Blue Jays Manager John Gibbons as the result of a foul ball call by crewmate Gabe Morales. Barrett finished fourth amongst 84 tracked umpires in Replay Review performance, with a .714 Review Affirmation Percentage.

All four members of Barrett's regular season crew—Barrett, Angel Hernandez, Lance Barksdale, and Will Little—officiated during the postseason, while Barrett himself drew particular praise for his leadership in regards to crewmate Hernandez, who himself earned the UEFL's 2016 Most Improved Umpire of the Year Award.

With his LCS selection this fall, Barrett has officiated the postseason for 12 consecutive years (2005-16).

Ted Barrett now has 17 points in the Umpire Ejection Fantasy League (16 Previous + 1 Award = 17).
The next postseason award, Honorable Umpire of the Year, will be released tomorrow.

2016 UEFL Award for Fill-In Umpire - Adam Hamari

Adam Hamari wins the UEFL's 2016 Fill-In Umpire of the Year Award [2015 Winner: John Tumpane].
Voting Results (Top 3): Adam Hamari (30%), Pat Hoberg (15%), Gabe Morales (12%).

Adam Hamari is the Umpire Ejection Fantasy League's 2016 Fill-In Umpire of the Year, which marks his first UEFL Award, having finished as Fill-In runner-up during the 2015 Awards season. In his fourth season as a Major League fill-in, Hamari experienced four ejections, following a three-ejection year in 2015. Hamari finished 23rd overall on the 2016 Replay Review leaderboard (RAP .588), which was in the top third of all umpires. Hamari earned praise for his professional ejections of Atlanta's Matt Kemp and Brian Snitker in September, but drew mixed reviews for his May ejections of Mets pitcher Noah Syndergaard and Terry Collins after Syndergaard threw behind Dodgers batter Chase Utley, whose slide into second base the postseason before broke shortstop Ruben Tejada's leg and necessitated the 2016 adoption of bona fide slide Rule 6.01(j). Hamari served in the Pacific Coast League in 2016, after spending the 2011-15 seasons in the International League. It was his first year in the PCL and 6th in Triple-A.

Adam Hamari now has 21 points in the Umpire Ejection Fantasy League (19 Previous + 2 Award = 21).
The next postseason award, Crew Chief of the Year, will be released later tonight.

Monday, November 7, 2016

2016 UEFL Award for Most Improved - Angel Hernandez

Angel Hernandez wins the Most Improved Umpire Award for 2016. [2015 Winner: Angel Hernandez.]
Voting Results (Top 3): Angel Hernandez (16%), Larry Vanover (15%), Phil Cuzzi/Marty Foster (6%).

Angel Hernandez is the Umpire Ejection Fantasy League's 2016 most improved umpire of the year, which marks his third consecutive season receiving an award (2014 Noteworthy Umpire) and second consecutive season receiving the Most Improved Umpire award (2015). In his 26th Major League Baseball umpiring season, Hernandez ejected three people, including one Spring Training ejection and two regular season balk ejections; he ejected two in 2015, as well, and three in 2014. Prior to the regular season, the Cuban-born Hernandez represented MLB as one of two umpires (Laz Diaz) assigned to officiate the MLB in Cuba Rays vs Cuban National Team exhibition in Havana; it was Hernandez's second visit to the island in a span of over 50 years.

In the postseason, Hernandez continued his journey into October with a National League Championship Series assignment (his last LCS was in 2010) during which he featured in a prominent Replay Review "call stands" ruling on a play at the plate, while sharing a moment of sportsmanship with Cubs batter Anthony Rizzo during a mound visit at Dodger Stadium.

Several commenters have noted a significant improvement in Hernandez's game since his assignment to veteran chief Ted Barrett's crew. For his part, Barrett won the UEFL's Crew Chief of the Year Award in 2014. Hernandez's 95.9% plate score was the second highest of the 2016 LCS (Jim Wolf, 98.6%).

Angel Hernandez now has 8 points in the UEFL Standings (7 Previous + 1 Award = 8).
The next postseason award, Fill-In Umpire of the Year, will be released tomorrow.

2016 UEFL Award for Worst Umpire - Vic Carapazza

The Umpire Ejection Fantasy League announces its postseason awards schedule, beginning with the Worst Umpire of the Year, below, and continuing with Most Improved Umpire, Fill-In, Crew Chief, Honorable, Noteworthy, Ejection(s) of the Year and concluding with Umpire of the Year. 171 total ballots were cast during this year's nominations process.

Pursuant to UEFL Rule 4-4, the postseason Awards distribution now begins with Worst Umpire of the Year.

2016 UEFL Awards: Worst Umpire of the Year: Vic Carapzza (19) [2015 Winner: John Hirschbeck]
Voting Results (Top 3): Vic Carapazza (12%), Dan Iassogna (9%), Joe West (8%).

Vic Carapazza receives the Umpire Ejection Fantasy League's 2016 Worst Umpire of the Year Award. In his sixth Major League Baseball umpiring season, Carapazza concluded the year with five ejections, all for arguing strike calls; he ejected five times in 2015 and seven in 2014. During his ejection of three Blue Jays on July 1, commenters alleged he "baited" Toronto catcher Russell Martin, calling the action and ejection "unnecessary" while characterizing an earlier ejection as "simply an attempt by an insecure young ump to establish himself." Carapazza officiated the 2016 American League Division Series.

Vic Carapazza now has 5 points in the UEFL Standings (8 Previous - 3 Award = 5).
The next postseason award, Most Improved Umpire of the Year, will be released later this afternoon.