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SBD/Issue 28/Leagues & Governing Bodies
MLB Umpires Under Fire For Three Missed Calls In ALCS Game Four
Published October 21, 2009
|Replay Reveals Napoli Tagged Both Posada
And Cano, Should Have Been Double Play
ONGOING TREND: In Boston, Nick Cafardo writes umpiring mistakes "even out over the regular season, but these guys have brought their worst performances for the playoffs when they need to have their best." Cafardo: "What bothers me the most is with six umpires on the field, why aren't there more conferences? Why doesn't an umpire who might have seen a play differently say, 'Let's talk about this so we can get it right?'" (BOSTON GLOBE, 10/21). In Newark, Brian Costa writes while none of last night's calls "proved decisive" in the game, they were "nonetheless an embarrassment for Major League Baseball, which already has had its share of umpiring issues this postseason" (Newark STAR-LEDGER, 10/21). In N.Y., Billy Witz writes the MLB Playoffs "have at times been one big slapstick routine" for the umpires, who have "executed some calls with all the clarity of Abbott and Costello." The umpires for last night's game "provided more head-slapping moments" (N.Y. TIMES, 10/21). Fox Business' Connell McShane: "The umpires have been brutal for the whole entire postseason" (Fox Business, 10/21). In N.Y., Bill Madden writes, "Once again, the umpires have reared their ugly heads with blown calls marring the postseason." A former MLB umpire said, "These guys are disgracing the profession" (N.Y. DAILY NEWS, 10/21). YAHOO SPORTS' Kevin Kaduk wrote under the header, "Umpire Tim McClelland Makes The Worst Call Of All Time." Kaduk: "There are simply no words for the ruling, other to say that one of the five other umpires should've offered his assistance, McClelland shouldn't ump another game in this series and that it's time for Bud Selig to stop being stubborn and expand the use of instant replay in baseball past disputed home run calls" (SPORTS.YAHOO.com, 10/20).
CALLS FOR REPLAY RE-IGNITED: ESPN's Buster Olney said, "They should go to replay right now. … Major League Baseball has a choice -- do they get the calls right or do they just look the other way?” Olney: "They have the technology with high definition and multiple angles to get the calls right. Use it!” ESPN's Mike Greenberg: "No one could possibly explain in a way that makes sense to me why that is good, why it is better not to correct that mistake. ... These moments are glaring and they have happened repeatedly throughout this postseason." ESPN's Mike Golic: "They’re correctable mistakes. Baseball is choosing, at this point, not to correct them” ("Mike & Mike in the Morning," ESPN2, 10/21). In N.Y., Mike Puma writes under the header, "Umps Look Like Chumps, Again." Last night's calls further stoked the "fire for the implementation of instant replay in baseball beyond home-run calls" (N.Y. POST, 10/21). Also in N.Y., Richard Sandomir wrote the "case for some sort of expanded instant replay was made" in the two plays involving Swisher in the fourth inning last night (NYTIMES.com, 10/20). The N.Y. DAILY NEWS' Peter Botte writes, "Does anyone still think installing an instant-replay system in baseball is a bad idea?" (N.Y. DAILY NEWS, 10/21). ESPN's Olney added, "Baseball's in a much better place to have instant replay than in the past because of high definition and all the multiple angles. If they simply had access to those tools, we certainly could have very quick and decisive calls made correctly" ("SportsCenter," ESPN, 10/21). But White Sox C A.J. Pierzynski said, "No, no replay. Please, we have enough replay as it is on home runs. It already takes forever if there’s a disputed home run call." Pierzynski: "It'd be nice to get it right, but then you're going to start wanting robots back there calling balls and strikes on every pitch. So you can't do that either" ("ESPN First Take," ESPN2, 10/21).
McClelland Receiving Criticism
For Missed Calls Last Night
PUSH FOR PARITY: In Baltimore, Peter Schmuck writes, "If I remember correctly, the whole point of that 1994 labor war was to narrow the gap between the so-called large-market and small-market teams." But with three of the top four media markets represented in the LCS, MLB "has to make a new effort to achieve a greater degree of economic parity." It might be "convenient to look at the huge increase in overall revenue and say that the game isn't broke and it doesn't really need fixing, but the bottom line isn't the only bottom line in this case." Schmuck: "When you have one player making as much as a whole other team, something is seriously out of whack" (Baltimore SUN, 10/21).