Monday, September 2, 2019

Joe West's Eventful Labor Day Weekend

Down Goes Joe West! The Blue Cowboy had himself a memorable Labor Day Weekend when the veteran HP Umpire took a tumble during Sunday's Mets-Phillies game in Philadelphia on a play at the plate as Mets runner Rajai Davis slid into West, taking his legs out from under him.

With one out and two on (R2, R3), Mets batter Jeff McNeil hit a 1-2 splitter from Phillies pitcher Hector Neris on the ground to first baseman Rhys Hoskins, who threw home to catcher JT Realmuto as Davis slid toward the foul territory side of home plate in an effort to avoid the tag.

Davis didn't escape Realmuto's mitt and was tagged out by plenty, but Davis' slide took him careening directly into Joe West, knocking MLB's longest-tenured umpire to his knees, and leaning on Davis' back for support.

The true hero of the play may just have been Hector Neris, who came over to pull the fallen West out of the fray and send Davis on his way as West signaled "out" on the play.

I'd also wager that in addition to correctly calling the runner out, West properly—and eagerly—opted to forgo Official Baseball Rule 6.04(a) Unsportsmanlike Conduct's prohibition against: "(4) Make intentional contact with the umpire in any manner," ruling Neris' assistance a most noble and welcome form of sportsmanlike conduct.

Video as follows:

Alternate Link: Umpire Joe West Taken Out by Mets Runner Rajai Davis' Slide (ESPN)


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