Umpires Live Up To Their Reputations

Manue and umpl.jpg

The umpiring this entire post-season so far has been horrific.  So bad in fact, that the sports league known well for its lack of interest in getting anything right the first time, has finally made a change.  No, there are still no consequences for bad umpiring.  That change may be another 3 or 4 decades down the road.  But in breaking a tradition that has been in place for 24 of the last 25 World Series, the umpiring crew will not include a first-timer for the 2009 Series.

Each year, the league has rewarded at least one umpire who never called a World Series before.  In the last two years, there were 3 new umpires involved in each.  But after a string of blatantly awful calls this post-season, only veteran umpires with World Series experience will be put on the field.  Those umpires are Joe West, Dana DeMuth, Gerry Davis, Brian Gorman, Jeff Nelson and Mike Everitt.  The first 3 have at least 25 years MLB experience and all have worked at least one World Series.

But the question still remains, why all the bad calls?  I have a few theories:

Revenge: After years of being harassed and demeaned by angry fans, coaches and players who claim that they are terrible,

these umpires decided to show us all the true meaning of “You suck, ump!”

– Manny has his own t-shirt; the umpires felt left out.

– Constantly asked, “Are you blind?”, these umps finally realized that being blind = free government disability benefits.  Awesome.

– If players can get away with using steroids, cheating on and beating on their wives and setting bad examples for children everywhere, why shouldn’t the umpires able to blow a few calls?  No biggie.

– Sheer entertainment value:  Who doesn’t LOVE a good argument?  

Robot ump.jpg
And watching two 60-something year-old men go at it like hormonally enraged teenagers just adds to the appeal and the TV ratings.

– More instant replay = same pay, less work.  May as well have a robot call the balls and strikes.  The ump can just supervise.

– Chicks dig bad boys.

So forget about those missed hit by pitches, the double play that wound up being only one out or that guy who called a runner out for leaving base too soon when he never even looked at the runner; these umpires are clearly on a mission.  And everyone loves a good controversy.  So umps, you go on with your bad selves!  We all cannot wait to see what you pull out of your back sides next.  I just hope it is not a yellow penalty flag, because that is totally the wrong sport.  Best of luck to ya!

Manuel photo by Jenn


*Read more about the Phillies at my other home page, Phightin’ Phils Phorum in the My Team Rivals network*




    At the final out of the NLCS series, before the fly ball was even caught, Carlor Ruiz turns to the ump and appears to pay his respects, then turns his helmet around, watches Victorino’s catch, and runs to the mound to celebrate. Is this gesture to the ump a tradition in baseball or is Ruiz just the smartest catcher in the league? Aren’t we going to meet that ump again in the World Series?


    I’ve read that “ALCS and NLCS umpires aren’t in play, because umps don’t work in consecutive rounds of the postseason.” Still, it seems like a smart move to show some respect…the word has to get around among the umps.

  3. kered42

    Bad Umpiring… a new tactic
    In all sports, yelling, screaming, begging is a proven waste of time. Try the following….

    Method A.. Call, gesture clearly for an “umpire huddle” This often solves the issue… FAILS??

    Method B . Look at the “instant replay” on the wide screen above everyone. Force the umpire to look at what the rest of the world is seeing.

    Method C.. Have all your team mates do likewise… stand on the field, watch the replay, gesture their dismay

    In many contests, the decision must be overturned, or your team goes home. I’m sure the media and every fan would be delighted to help. Nobody wins with bad decisions Like World Cup Team USA and the Bloemfontein Blunder

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