Saturday, November 11, 2017

2017 UEFL Rules Summit Discussion

The Umpire Ejection Fantasy League announces its 2017 UEFL Rules Summit, our annual forum for discussion of controversial issues which may have surfaced during the past season, setting forth a framework for rectifying these issues by amending the existing UEFL Rules Book ahead of the 2018 UEFL season.

This discussion thread is an open colloquium for proposal, discussion and debate of potential rules changes. This thread will remain open through Thursday, November 16, at which time voting will proceed—voting will not occur prior to that date. This will provide ample time for proposal and subsequent discussion of possible rules changes for the 2018 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 and the following list, accordingly, will be routinely updated to reflect such proposals. Nonmaterial proposed modifications and cascading editorial changes are underlined, deletions are printed in strikethrough and material additions are bold faced.  Comments/rationale not part of the actual book are indicated by italics. Individual propositions are preceded by the ">>" bullet point symbol.

Rule 1 (Selection of Umpires).
>> 1-2. ...each member of the league shall select one two MLB crew chiefs to serve as UEFL crew chiefs.
COMMENT: Adds a second crew to chief to list of drafted umpires (2 cc + 2 PRM + 2 SEC = 6).
>> 1-3. ...each member of the league shall select two one umpires...Primary umpires may not be Triple-A call-ups... [Primary Umpire]
      1-4. ...league members select two one additional umpires. [Secondary Umpire]
      1-6. Subsequent to the Secondary Draft, each league member shall select one umpire chosen only from the list of umpires classified as "AAA" or fill-in. [Fill-In Umpire]
COMMENT: Replaces current 1 cc + 2 PRM + 2 SEC crew with 1 cc + 1 PRM + 1 SEC + 1 Fill-In.
>> 1-5-b. An umpire may be replaced pursuant to 1-5-a if the originally drafted or replaced umpire has missed at least 30 consecutive days during the season.
COMMENT: Authorizes replacement of a clearly absent or injured umpire midseason.
>> 1-5-c. Up to one umpire of any class, regardless of injury status, may be replaced at the All-Star Break pursuant to the procedure prescribed in UEFL Rule 1-5-a concerning points structure.
COMMENT: Authorizes a midseason "trade" or replacement of no more than one healthy drafted umpire.

Rule 2 (The Season).

Rule 3 (Crew Division).
>> 3-3. ...Each incorrect ejection committed by a UEFL crew chief's crew shall result in the subtraction of one (-1) point toward a UEFL member's overall score...
COMMENT: Changes present rule (+0) to (-1) for an incorrect call by a crew chief's crew.

Rule 4 (League Scoring).
>> 4-2-a-1. 3 points for each non-incorrect ejection by a primary AAA umpire; OR a. In the event of an ejection resulting from an incorrect call, either by himself or a crewmate, the AAA Umpire will receive just 2 base points instead of 3 points.
     4-2-a-2. 2 points for each ejection by a primary MLB umpire...
COMMENT: Eliminates bonus point for QOCY and QOCU ejections by a AAA-level umpire.
>> 4-2-b-3-i. +2 points, applied concurrently with -4 QOCN (thus, -4 + 2 = -2) for a QOCN ball/strike ejection wherein the umpire achieved 95.0% or greater accuracy for the entire game. [AND]
     4-2-b-3-ii. +1 points, applied concurrently with -4 QOCN (thus, -4 + 1 = -3) for a QOCN ball/strike ejection wherein the umpire achieved 93.0-94.9% accuracy for the entire game.
COMMENT: Allows umpire to earn points to mitigate the -4 QOCN penalty based on whole-game performance.
>> 4-3-c. Post-season appearance points... (1) Wild Card +2, Division Series +3, Championship Series +4, World Series +5.
COMMENT: Adds one additional point per round for on-field postseason umpires.
>> 4-4-h. An umpire recognized as Most Declining Umpire of the Year (min. 0 / max. 1 umpire) will receive -1 bonus points.
EDITORIAL CHANGE: 4-4: Umpires receiving the distinction of subsection (h/i) will have shown a regression in ability and might have had a regrettable situation occur in-season.
COMMENT: Eliminates one of the two negative postseason UEFL Awards.
>> 4-4-h. An umpire recognized as Most Disappointing Season (min. 0 / max. 1 umpire) will receive -1 bonus points.
COMMENT: Replaces "Most Declining" with an award whose vision and mission is clearer.
>> 4-4-i. An umpire recognized as Worst Umpire of the Year (min. 0 / max. 1 umpire) will receive -3 bonus points.
EDITORIAL CHANGE: 4-4. ...Umpires receiving the distinction of subsection (h/i) will have shown a regression in ability and might have had a regrettable situation occur in-season.
COMMENT: Eliminates one of the two negative postseason UEFL Awards.

Rule 5 (Statistics).

Rule 6 (Challenges and Appeals).
>> 6-1. Any logged-in person may file a UEFL Challenge.
COMMENT: Allows any person logged into DISQUS to challenge/appeal an Original Ruling.
>> 6-2-b-1. In rendering QOC regarding a pitch location (ball/strike), Pitch f/x, or Statcast, whose titles shall herein be used interchangeably, shall be the primarily cited source.
EDITORIAL CHANGE: 6-2-b-2. ...shall be calculated using pitch f/x, or statcast, data.
COMMENT: Acknowledges MLB/MLBAM's change to the Statcast platform while allowing the "Pitch f/x" phrase to continue to be used, so as to maintain consistency in identifying the stats' purpose.
>> 6-2-b-5. A balls/strikes ejection concerning multiple similar ball/strike calls during the same at-bat may be deemed irrecusable if the multiple calls were consistently officiated, even if otherwise QOCY or QOCN. May be referred to as the "Meals Rule."
COMMENT: Neither rewards nor punishes umpire whose pitch calls were consistent during the eventful AB.
>> 6-2-b-5-c. Ejections for the reason of "Check Swing" shall be adjudicated based on whether the batter attempted to strike the pitch as the pitch crossed home plate automatically, be referred to the UEFL Appeals Board for QOC determination. No UEFL Challenge shall be accepted for any such ejection.
COMMENT: Eliminates automatic Appeals Board review of check swings and restores the ability of the membership to challenge the Original Ruling via referral to the Appeals Board.
>> 6-4-a-3. At-large terms shall be limited to two years one year in length with no term limits.
COMMENT: Extends at-large UEFL Appeals Board terms from one to two years (3 elections each year).
>> 6-4-a-4. At the conclusion of the season and during the Rules Summit, Appeals Board members may sit for re-election/retention. An absolute majority is required for re-election. If a Board member fails to ascertain this during a first ballot, a run-off may be initiated.
COMMENT: Eliminates Appeals Board re-election vote prior to the general pre-season election.
>> 6-5-a. In the event that a play under appeal can be conclusively categorized or adjudged as Correct/Incorrect as a result of this action, through the use of conclusive and/or clear and/or convincing evidence, the appeal shall be either Upheld or Denied Original Ruling shall be confirmed or overturned, as specified in Rule 6-4-b-1 or -2, respectively.
COMMENT: Aligns language with actual voting terminology used by the UEFL Appeals Board.
>> 6-5-b. In the event that a play under appeal cannot be conclusively categorized or adjudged as Correct/Incorrect as a result of this action, through the lack of conclusive nor clear nor convincing evidence, the appeal shall be upheld or deferred, as specified in Rule 6-4-b-2 or -3, respectively.
COMMENT: Aligns language with actual voting terminology used by the UEFL Appeals Board.
>> 6-5-c-5-b. YES (Defense) = x-2, 1-x, 2-x, 3-1, or 3-2 or 3-x ==> Called Ball. [AND]
     6-5-c-5-c. NO (Offense) = 0-0, 1-0, 2-0, 3-0 ==> Called Strike.
RATIONALE: Changes ball/strike ejection pitch count criteria, specifically related to a 3-0 pitch ruled a "strike." Disqualifies a 3-0 strike from being considered as having "realistically resulted in a different outcome of the at-bat," provided the ejection occurred after the at-bat's conclusion or other subsequent pitch (e.g., an ejection after the 3-0 pitch, but prior to the 3-1 pitch, will still be QOC adjudicated based on the QOC of the strike one call).

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.
COMMENT: Turns off guest comments; reduces likelihood of spam, violative, and/or trolling.
>> 8-1-h. Any removed comment shall result in a seven-day penalty wherein the offending author may not receive league points for a seven-day period, beginning after comment removal.
COMMENT: Creates a stricter penalty for removed comments; eliminates penalty discretion.
>> 8-5. A grand prize shall be instituted and awarded to the UEFL member who earns the most points at the end of the postseason. As such, a league entry fee shall be imposed at an amount set by the Commissioner, which must be paid prior to the start of the regular season.
     Note: Pursuant to Rules vote, participation in the official Umpire Ejection Fantasy League shall remain free of charge to members.
COMMENT: Adds a prize for the winner while instituting a registration fee; eliminates free play.

Rule 9 (Unaddressed and Authorized Provisions).

The final portion of the Rules Summit ballot will feature 2017 UEFL Appeals Board members seeking re-election for 2018, as afforded by the process delineated by UEFL Rule 6-4-a-4. Click here to view the Board's decisions in 2017.

Following the 2017 Rules Summit's discussion phase, voting will occur. No voting shall take place prior to 11/16, until the discussion phase has ended and all proposals become part of the finalized ballot.

Friday, November 10, 2017

2017 UEFL Final Standings and the Perfect Crew

With UEFL awards season now complete, it is time to unveil the Umpire Ejection Fantasy League's Final Standings for 2017, as well as the Perfect Crew. This year's "Perfect Score" was 112 while the lowest score possible was -39, a spread of 151 points.

2017 Perfect Crew (Highest Scoring Crew): 112 points.
Crew Chief: Joe West (23 pts).
Primary Umpires: Will Little (26 pts) & Vic Carapazza (22 pts).
Secondary Umpires: Mark Wegner (23 pts) & Chad Fairchild (18 pts).

2017 Imperfect Crew (Lowest Scoring Crew): -39 points.
Crew Chief: Jerry Meals (-6 pts).
Primary Umpires: Tony Randazzo (-6 pts) & Dan Bellino (-6 pts).
Secondary Umpires: DJ Reyburn (-12 pts) & Lance Barrett (-9 pts).

Joe West led 2017's "Perfect Crew."
UEFL Final Standings (Ties resolved per Rule 5-3)
1) tjskip (87 pts).
2) Aztrini47 (68 pts).
3) Bino (64 pts).
4) wgvaz (64 pts).
5) sonderweg74 (62 pts).
6) KTurner14 (62 pts).
7) toss 'em (62 pts).
8) Bryce Swanson (62 pts).
9) spballsandstrikes (61 pts).
10) writingump (61 pts).
11) jwwhite47 (60 pts).
12) dwlockman (59 pts).
13) skippyINC (59 pts).
14) hadstein87 (58 pts).
15) L'Ump (58 pts).
16) MWmoney (57 pts).
17) Denny Crane (56 pts).
18) FVB6 (54 pts).
19) Burtrh3 (54 pts).
20) Jeremy407 (53 pts).
21) s0m0teitbe (52 pts).
22) dmcneeley (52 pts).
23) emkst22 (52 pts).
24) Bluewillie100 (51 pts).
25) davidsteinle (50 pts).
26) Bleacher Bums (49 pts).
27) Commander Red (49 pts).
28) Spence1222 (48 pts).
29) Mortonkc (47 pts).
30) 618Umpire (47 pts).
Complete Final Standings, points, and results available via the UEFL Portal: 2017 Standings page.

The Rules Summit will begin tomorrow.

2017 UEFL Award for Umpire of the Year - Mark Wegner

Mark Wegner is the UEFL's (Best) Umpire of the Year for 2017 [2016: Chris Guccione].
Voting Results (Top 5): Wegner (34.2%), Alfonso Marquez (7.0%), Jim Reynolds (6.1%), Chad Fairchild (5.3%), Ted Barrett/Laz Diaz/Hunter Wendelstedt (3.5%).

Award Winner: Mark Wegner.
Mark Wegner wins the UEFL Umpire of the Year Award for 2017. In his 20th season in the majors, Wegner went ejection-less until the postseason, when he ejected then-Red Sox Manager John Farrell for arguing balls and strikes, drawing praise in opting not to ejected batter Dustin Pedroia for Pedroia's unsporting actions. Wegner also finished seventh in Replay with 15-of-21 affirmed calls (.714 RAP), including two in the World Series.
Related Post: MLB Ejection P-1 - Mark Wegner (1; John Farrell) (10/9/17).

Wegner's heads-up year started early with a ball out of play & base award ruling on the very first day of Spring Training back in February: While players and coaches stood around after a thrown ball exited the playing field, 3B Umpire Wegner alertly awarded bases, apparently one of the only people on the field paying attention to the ball's journey as it bounced into, and then out of the dugout and back onto the playing field.
Related Post: First Play of Spring - Overthrown Two Base Award (2/24/17).

In the end, it was Wegner serving as plate umpire for Game 7 of the World Series as the Astros defeated the Dodgers, marking his fifth consecutive year appearing in either the League Championship Series or World Series—the only umpire to possess such an active streak. Wegner has now made the postseason every year since suffering a torn calf muscle in 2011.
Related Post: Umpire Odds & Ends: Wegner Injured (5/28/11).

UEFL Awards History, Mark Wegner
Noteworthy (Promising) Umpire of the Year: 2013.

Mark Wegner now has 24 points in the Umpire Ejection Fantasy League (19 Previous + 5 Award = 24).
Final Standings will be released later tonight.

Thursday, November 9, 2017

2017 UEFL Award for Ejection of the Year - Gerry Davis

Gerry Davis had the Best Ejection of the Year for 2017 [2016: Joe West & Bob Davidson].
Voting Results (Top 4): Davis-109 (56%); Bellino-FAN/Cuzzi-117/Kulpa-001/Little-WBC6 (4%).

Award Winner: Gerry Davis.
In MLB Ejections 109-110 - Gerry Davis (1-2; Beltre, Banister), 2B Umpire Gerry Davis ejected Rangers 3B Adrian Beltre for, essentially, moving the on-deck circle after being told to stay in the circle as the on-deck hitter. Late in a blowout game (the Marlins were leading Texas, 18-6), Davis walked from his position inside of second base toward the right field foul line and instructed on-deck batter Beltre to move from his position along the warning track behind the dirt circle to the batter's box between the dirt circle and dugout, pursuant to Rule 8.01(b) [authority to order a player to "do or refrain from doing anything which affects the administering of these rules"]. Beltre heard Davis' instruction of "stay in the circle" differently, as Adrian picked up the circle itself and dragged it toward his preferred position closer to the backstop behind home plate. Davis then ejected Beltre for objecting to his order, as in Rule 8.01(d), and Manager Jeff Banister for arguing Beltre's ejection, prompting many commenters to declare the odd exchange as Ejection of the Year-worthy.

Gerry Davis now has 13 points in the Umpire Ejection Fantasy League (12 Previous + 1 Award = 13).
The final postseason award, (Best) Umpire of the Year, will be released tomorrow.

2017 Promising Umpires - Cory Blaser & Chad Fairchild

Cory Blaser & Chad Fairchild are 2017's Promising Umpires of the Year [2016: Holbrook & Porter].
Voting (Top 5): Blaser (12.9%), Fairchild (11.6%), Quinn Wolcott/John Tumpane (8.9%), Adam Hamari (7%).

Cory Blaser & Chad Fairchild are the Umpire Ejection Fantasy League's 2017 Promising Umpires of the Year.

Award Winner: Cory Blaser.
Blaser's season started early, with a trip to the World Baseball Classic in Japan, where Replay Review affirmed a fan interference call at the Tokyo Dome. He finished the regular season with zero ejections and a .591 Review Affirmation Percentage, 27th best in the league, earning a trip to the postseason where he plated Game 1 of the Cubs-Nationals NL Division Series, calling a neutral 96.7% game, eventually going three-for-three on reviews during the series. In complimenting Blaser, one commenter called him "a quality young ump who had a very good season & was excellent in the postseason."
Related PostDiscussion of 2017 AL and NL Division Series (10/5/17).

Award Winner: Chad Fairchild.
Fairchild's three ejections in 2017 accounted for his first dismissals since the 2015 season, when he ejected Terry Collins. Meanwhile, his two overturned calls in 13 total replays (.846 RAP) was fourth-best in baseball, leading to praise of a "terrific season" and "good situation handling" concerning his ejection of Jose Bautista in September. Fairchild earned his first League Championship Series assignment with a visit to the 2017 ALCS, working the plate for Game 1 and putting up the highest plate score of the 12 total LCS games at a 97.4% clip, along with two challenged and confirmed calls via replay in Games 1 and 2.
Related PostDiscussion of 2017 AL & NL League Championship Series (10/13/17).

UEFL Awards History, Cory Blaser & Chad Fairchild

Cory Blaser now has 9 points in the Umpire Ejection Fantasy League (6 Prev + 3 Award = 9).
Chad Fairchild now has 21 points in the Umpire Ejection Fantasy League (18 Previous + 3 Award = 21).
The next postseason award, Ejection of the Year, will be released tonight.

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

2017 UEFL Award for Honorable Umpire - John Tumpane

John Tumpane is 2017's Honorable Umpire of the Year [2016: Rob Drake & John Hirschbeck].
Voting Results (Top 5): Tumpane (37.4%), Phil Cuzzi (9.2%), Ted Barrett/Drake (6.5%), Bill Welke (5.2%).

John Tumpane is the Umpire Ejection Fantasy League's 2017 Honorable Umpire of the Year.

Award Winner: John Tumpane.
In his first complete season as a full-time MLB umpire, having been hired to the staff midway through the 2016 regular season, Tumpane ejected six players and managers, finishing 15th on the RAP leaderboard with a .647 (11-for-17) Review Affirmation Percentage.
Related PostMLB Officially Hires John Tumpane to Full-Time Staff (7/1/16).

On June 28, Tumpane intervened upon observing a woman standing on the river-bound side of the Roberto Clemente Bridge, speaking with her and eventually helping pull her back toward the bridge and away from the Allegheny River below.
Related PostMLB Umpire John Tumpane Saves Suicidal Woman's Life (6/28/17).
Related PostLet's Talk - Mental Health in an Abusive Environment (10/10/17).

After the regular season, Tumpane officiated his first postseason game as a member of Mike Winters' AL Wild Card Game crew; Tumpane's postseason assignment after just his first full season as a full-time umpire virtually ties a modern-era Major League record for quickest playoff assignment after hire (Ted Barrett, for instance, worked the 2000 National League Division Series round after promotion to the staff in July 1999).
Related Post2017 Wild Card & Division Series Umpires Roster (10/2/17).

UEFL Awards History, John Tumpane
Fill-In Umpire of the Year: 2015.

John Tumpane now has 18 points in the Umpire Ejection Fantasy League (16 Prev + 2 Award = 18).
The next postseason award, Promising Umpire of the Year, will be released tomorrow.

2017 UEFL Award for Crew Chief - Ted Barrett

Ted Barrett wins the UEFL's 2017 Crew Chief of the Year Award [2016 Winner: Ted Barrett].
Voting Results (Top 3): Ted Barrett (24.5%), Joe West (16%), Mike Winters (12.3%).

Award Winner: Ted Barrett.
Ted Barrett is the Umpire Ejection Fantasy League's 2017 Crew Chief of the Year, which marks his third time winning the Crew Chief of the Year Award, and second consecutive award. In his 21st MLB season, Barrett experienced one ejection as the result of a correctly officiated balk call in Anaheim.
Related PostMLB Ejection 056 - Ted Barrett (1; Brian Snitker) (5/31/17).

Earlier in the season, Barrett identified the rarely-seen disruptive variety of unsportsmanlike conduct embodied in Rule 6.04—which prohibits any fielder from taking a position in the batter's line of vision and acting in a manner to distract the batter—and ordered the violative fielder Jonathan Villar to stay put with the help of 2B Umpire Lance Barksdale, who efficiently relayed the message.
Related PostCase Play 2017-3 - Illegal Batter Disconcertion [Solved] (4/27/17).

As was the case in 2016, all four members of Barrett's regular season crew—Barrett, Angel Hernandez, Lance Barksdale, and newcomer John Tumpane—officiated during the postseason, including Tumpane's first-ever selection to the playoffs.

All members of Barrett's crew worked October.
With his own ALDS selection this fall, Barrett has officiated the postseason for 13 consecutive years (2005-17). He finished 16th amongst 92 tracked umpires with a .643 Replay Affirmation Percentage, having been overturned five times in 14 reviews.

UEFL Awards History, Ted Barrett
Umpire of the Year: 2014.
Honorable Umpire of the Year: 2012, 2013, 2014.
Crew Chief of the Year: 2014, 2016.

Ted Barrett now has 12 points in the Umpire Ejection Fantasy League (11 Previous + 1 Award = 12).
The next postseason award, Honorable Umpire of the Year, will be released tonight.

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

2017 UEFL Award for Fill-In Umpire - Stu Scheurwater

Stu Scheurwater wins UEFL's 2017 Fill-In Umpire of the Year Award [2016 Winner: Adam Hamari].
Voting Results (Top 3): Scheurwater (48.2%), Ryan Blakney (13.6%), Chris Segal (8.2%).

Award Winner: Stu Scheurwater.
Stu Scheurwater is the Umpire Ejection Fantasy League's 2017 Fill-In Umpire of the Year. In his fourth season as a Major League fill-in, Scheurwater worked the vast majority of the season at the MLB level, more than doubling his prior big league experience of 100 games from 2014-16, and spending the bulk on the season on the injured Dale Scott's crew.
Related PostA Look at the Dale Scott Crew Without Their Crew Chief (5/24/17).

Scheurwater concluded the season with five ejections, including his first career heave-ho in late April over a correctly officiated balk call. Said one commenter, "He handled both the call and the aftermath like a star. I have a feeling he is going to be full time next year."
Related PostMLB Ejection 021 - Stu Scheurwater (1; Buck Showalter) (4/30/17).

Scheurwater listens to and ejects Joe Girardi.
In Replay Review, Scheurwater's 11-for-21 affirmation rate (.524 RAP) beat out the league average of .504, and ranked fifth amongst call-up umpires (Sean Barber, Segal, Blakney, Shane Livensparger).

Scheurwater served in the Pacific Coast League in 2017, his sixth overall season in Triple-A.
Related Post2017 Pacific Coast League Umpire Roster (3/11/17).

UEFL Awards History, Stu Scheurwater

Stu Scheurwater now has 11 points in the Umpire Ejection Fantasy League (9 Previous + 2 Award = 11).
The next postseason award, Crew Chief of the Year, will be released tomorrow.

2017 UEFL Award for Most Improved - Marty Foster

Marty Foster wins the Most Improved Umpire Award for 2017. [2016 Winner: Angel Hernandez.]
Voting Results (Top 3): Marty Foster (37.1%), Phil Cuzzi/Dan Iassogna (5.2%).

Award Winner: Marty Foster.
Marty Foster is the Umpire Ejection Fantasy League's 2017 most improved umpire of the year. In his 22nd Major League Baseball umpiring season, Foster ejected three people and drew praise for improvement over the past few seasons working on veteran Mike Winters' crew: "Sometimes you just need that crew you work well with and Foster has found it."

For the first time in a decade, Foster earned a position in the postseason, serving on Ted Barrett's crew for the Boston-Houston American League Division Series.
Related Post2017 Wild Card & Division Series Umpires Roster (10/2/17).

Foster's three overturned calls via Replay Review—paired with seven affirmed rulings for a RAP of .700—earned him a RAP rank of ninth in the League, and a tie for sixth place for fewest overturns.

One commenter said, of Foster and the Most Improved award, "he's really the only candidate," and the voting results support that notion: Foster easily won this award, defeating tied-for-second umpires Cuzzi and Iassogna by over 30% of the vote.

UEFL Awards History, Marty Foster
Worst Umpire of the Year (2012, 2013).

Marty Foster now has 3 points in the UEFL Standings (2 Previous + 1 Award = 3).
The next postseason award, Fill-In Umpire of the Year, will be released tonight.

Monday, November 6, 2017

2017 UEFL Award for Most Declining - Paul Emmel

Paul Emmel wins the Most Declining Umpire Award for 2017. This award was not given from 2011-2016.
Voting Results (Top 3): Emmel (10.5%), Joe West (8.6%), Kerwin Danley/Jerry Layne (T-7.6%).

Award Winner: Paul Emmel.
Paul Emmel is the Umpire Ejection Fantasy League's 2017 most declining umpire of the year, which marks his first postseason award. In his 19th Major League Baseball umpiring season, Emmel was promoted to Crew Chief, having served as an acting crew chief on multiple occasions in 2016.
Related PostSource - Jim Joyce Retires, Holbrook & Emmel Promoted (1/16/17).

Emmel concluded the 2017 season with five ejections (.800 QOC) and 11 overturned calls via Replay Review out of 20 total calls sent to review (.450 RAP, ranked 53rd in the league).

In opting for Emmel for this selection, one commenter summarized 2017 as "a disaster of a season for him," referencing the aforementioned replay numbers, ball/strike statistics, and crew chief woes.

In regards to the latter, Emmel received criticism for his response during a September game wherein a fastball from Detroit pitcher Buck Farmer struck HP Umpire Quinn Wolcott on a direct shot as catcher John Hicks failed to catch the pitch. The offending fastball was Farmer's first pitch to Indians batter Yandy Diaz, effected immediately after Farmer walked Carlos Santana, and after Wolcott had ejected Tigers Manager Brad Ausmus and catcher James McCann for arguing a previous ball four call. No further ejections occurred.
Related PostMLB Ejections 172-173 - Quinn Wolcott (McCann, Ausmus) (9/13/17).

Quinn Wolcott is hit by a pitch in September.
In our visual analysis of the sequence, we noted that while 1B Umpire Brian O'Nora entered into a sprint toward home plate after Wolcott was struck by the pitch, 2B Umpire Emmel appeared to walk, then ultimately jog, to the plate. Noted one commenter, "Emmel shouldn't be the chief of this crew. Brian O'Nora should." Another said, "[Emmel] really needs to step it up."
Related PostDid Detroit Throw at Umpire Wolcott? A Visual Analysis (9/14/17).

Emmel, as crew chief, also presided over the first illegal re-entry in MLB history during an August game at Fenway Park when Red Sox first baseman Hanley Ramirez replaced DH Chris Young in the top of the 9th inning, only for Young to illegally return and pinch hit for Ramirez in the bottom frame.
Related PostPlayer Illegally Re-Enters Game for 1st Time in MLB History (8/30/17)

In July, when Angel Hernandez sued the Commissioner's Office alleging racially-motivated discrimination, one of his arguments was that MLB promoted less qualified, white umpires to the position of Crew Chief, while more deserving minority umpires were passed over. While the suit did not specifically name Emmel (or any other individual umpire) as a less-deserving candidate for crew chief, one commenter included Emmel in a short list of recently promoted umpires that "are a bit questionable."
Related PostAngel Hernandez Sues MLB for Racial Discrimination (7/3/17).

UEFL Awards History, Paul Emmel

Paul Emmel now has 11 points in the UEFL Standings (12 Previous - 1 Award = 11).
The next postseason award, Most Improved Umpire of the Year, will be released tomorrow.

2017 UEFL Award for Worst Umpire - CB Bucknor

The Umpire Ejection Fantasy League announces its postseason awards schedule, beginning with the Worst Umpire of the Year, below, and continuing with Most Declining, Most Improved, Fill-In, Crew Chief, Honorable, Promising, Ejection(s) of the Year and concluding with Umpire of the Year. 127 total ballots were cast during this year's nominations process.

UEFL Rule 4-4 governs postseason awards distribution, which begins with the Worst Umpire of the Year.

2017 UEFL Awards: Worst Umpire of the Year: CB Bucknor (54) [2016 Winner: Vic Carapazza].
Voting Results (Top 3): CB Bucknor (12.7%), Angel Hernandez (11.8%), Carlos Torres (11.8%).

Award Winner: CB Bucknor (54).
CB Bucknor receives the Umpire Ejection Fantasy League's 2017 Worst Umpire of the Year Award. In his 22nd Major League Baseball umpiring season, Bucknor concluded the year with one ejection; he ejected once in 2016 and three in 2015. In a rare instance of an award apparently determined during the season's first month, Bucknor ejected Mariners Manager Scott Servais on April 16 (MLB Ejection 006 - CB Bucknor (1; Scott Servais)), with commenters acknowledging the correctness of the call, but decrying Bucknor's mechanics—first signaling "Time" before indicating "out" upon an apparent request by an opposing player—as contributing to the ejection.

Unfortunately, just days later, Bucknor was again involved in a controversial sequence, this time in Atlanta. On April 18, Bucknor called the Nationals and Braves back to the field after reversing an initial strikeout call to that of "foul ball." When the game concluded shortly thereafter, Nationals outfielder Jayson Werth confronted Bucknor, airing further grievances through the media thereafter.
Related PostBucknor's False Strikeout, Non-Ejection (Jayson Werth) (4/18/17).

UEFL Awards History, CB Bucknor
Most Improved Umpire of the Year (2013, 2014).

CB Bucknor now has 4 points in the UEFL Standings (7 Previous - 3 Award = 4).
The next postseason award, Most Declining Umpire of the Year, will be released later this afternoon.