Sunday, May 14, 2017

Umpiring Legend, MLB Sup Steve Palermo Has Died

Former American League Umpire and MLB Umpiring Supervisor Steve Palermo has died at the age of 67.

Former AL Umpire Steve Palermo has died.
Born in Worcester, Massachusetts in 1949, Palermo's career in the American League spanned from an October 1976 debut through his final game 15 years later; his on-field career came to an abrupt conclusion on July 7, 1991 when he was shot in the back while trying to help a robbery victim in a Dallas restaurant parking lot. Following his injury, surgery, rehabilitation, and an initial prognosis that he would never walk again, Palermo regained his ambulation through crutches and, eventually, a cane.

AL Umpire Palermo recorded a total of 47 ejections in 1,871 regular season games officiated. Palermo worked the 1986 All-Star Game, 1981 AL Division Series, three American League Championship Series (1980, 82, 89), and the 1983 World Series.

After his field days were over, Palermo in 1994 joined Major League Baseball as a Special Assistant to the Chairman of the Major League Executive Council before his ascension to MLB Umpire Supervior in 2000, as part of the unified Major Leagues' realignment at the turn of the 21st century. Palermo was one of the principals involved in the development of the first MLB Umpire Manual.

Palermo, who resided in Kansas City, Missouri, had reportedly been battling cancer before he passed away.

A black memorial "SP" patch will be made available for umpires to wear on their sleeve in honor of Palermo.

This brings the number of memorial patches worn by MLB umpires in 2017 to three. The three black patches worn on umpire sleeves in 2017 are MJ, RG, and SP:

1) MJ - Mark Johnson. Passed away October 26, 2016 at the age of 65. Umpired in the American League (1979-99).
2) RG - Russ Goetz. Passed away March 15, 2017 at the age of 86. Umpired in the American League (1968-83).
3) SP - Steve Palermo. Passed away May 13, 2017 at the age of 67. Umpired in the American League (1976-91).


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