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RULING SAYS REPLACEMENT UMPS CANNOT WORK IN TORONTO
Published May 1, 1995
The Ontario Labor Relations Board ruled Friday that MLB umpires cannot be locked out of games played at SkyDome and that replacement umps will not be allowed to work Blue Jays' games after the team's first home stand which ends Wednesday. Regular umpires must work the next homestand, which begins May 9, or they would be in an "illegal strike" (Donovan Vincent, TORONTO STAR, 4/29). Jays President Paul Beeston, on the possibility of regular umpires returning for games at SkyDome only: "That is probably the scenario that you will see. Because as much as it is an illegal lockout, it is also an illegal strike" ("Sports Tonight," CNN, 4/28). ESPN's Peter Gammons said the situation "might" be settled because of the ruling and his guess is that they will settle ("Baseball Tonight," 4/20). The two sides are reportedly about $10M apart in what would be a four-year contract. "That's less than $400,000 a club, a bargain price for the best umpiring" (Dave Anderson, N.Y TIMES, 4/30). In New York, Phil Mushnick writes, according to a source "intimate with MLB's replacement umpires," several replacements "have been subjected to 'psychological terrorism,' including late night obscene phone calls to their wives and children during their absence from home" (N.Y. POST, 5/1).