Monday, November 5, 2018

2018 UEFL Award for Most Improved - Andy Fletcher

Andy Fletcher wins the Most Improved Umpire Award for 2018. [2017 Winner: Marty Foster.]
Voting Results (Top 3): Andy Fletcher (28.9%), Kerwin Danley (14.8%), Vic Carapazza (5.5%).

Award Winner: Andy Fletcher (49).
Andy Fletcher is the Umpire Ejection Fantasy League's 2018 most improved umpire of the year. In his 19th Major League Baseball umpiring season, Fletcher ejected six people.

After Fletcher's ejection of Carlos Gomez in September, Gomez took to Twitter and Periscope to blast Fletcher, prompting the MLBUA to appeal to the Commissioner's Office to take action after the latest case of postgame umpire admonition. As MLB did after Ian Kinsler personally attacked Angel Hernandez in 2017, the Commissioner's Office fined, but did not suspend, Gomez. The Gomez and Kinsler fines represented less than one tenth of one percent of each player's salary.
Related PostMLB Ejection 171 - Andy Fletcher (6; Carlos Gomez) (9/20/18).
Related PostFined - Carlos Gomez to Appeal Financial Penalty (9/25/18).

Fletcher was the only umpire to call a game-ending balk in August in Seattle that replays indicated was certainly a balk and was a much more difficult get for 1B Umpire Fletcher than for his crewmates around the diamond...yet Fletcher was the only umpire with the gumption to see and call it.
Related PostWalk-Off Balk - Dodgers' Floro Does Too Much at Once (8/19/18).

For the second time in his career, Fletcher officiated the postseason, and worked his first-ever Division Series with Jerry Layne's crew in Houston. He also officiated his second All-Star Game in July.
Related Post2018 Wild Card & Division Series Umpires Roster (10/2/18).

Fletcher finished in the middle of the pack for Replay Review, with eight upheld and nine overturned calls (.471 RAP, T-52nd).

One commenter characterized Fletcher's season thusly: "Absolutely TREMENDOUS year by Andy. He has struggled mightily for many years, but he reinvented himself this year. I saw confidence in his calls, belief in himself behind the plate, and MLB assigned him as a rover for playoff caliber series in August and September...what a tremendous job Andy did and highlights the fact that you should never give up trying to improve and get better. This was a break-through year for Fletcher."

UEFL Awards History, Andy Fletcher

Andy Fletcher now has 3 points in the UEFL Standings (8 Previous + 1 Award = 9).
The next postseason award, Fill-In Umpire of the Year, will be released tomorrow.


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