Saturday, May 11, 2013

Major League Baseball needs to hold the umpires fully accountable----NOW!

After two botched calls earlier this week, Major League Baseball, especially commissioner Allan "Bud" Selig, cannot keep their heads in the sand on the issues of instant replay and umpire competency.

On Wednesday, Oakland's Adam Rosales hits an apparent, game-tying homer in the 9th off Cleveland closer Chris Perez. However, 3rd base umpire and crew chief Angel Hernandez, a 15 year veteran, doesn't see it clear the fence, and assumes the ball is still in play. Upon further review, when it was obvious that the call should've been reversed, Hernandez, stupidly, held his ground.

On Friday, MLB Network analyst Peter Gammons, quoted by Yahoo!, alleged that Hernandez deliberately refused to overturn the call as a form of silent protest against the replay system. Agree with him if you like, but the real issue here lies with the fact that too many umpires put themselves ahead of the integrity of the game, seemingly drunk with power. There've been too many instances that I personally have witnessed on TV of umpires missing calls involving the Mets, but that's another story altogether.

Now, let's move back to Thursday, and a clear case of umpire stupidity. Rookie manager Bo Porter of the Houston Astros caught the umps napping when he made an extra, albeit illegal, pitching change in his game vs. the Angels. Angels manager Mike Scioscia rightfully protested, but the gripe was withdrawn after the Angels won the game. Plate umpire Fieldin Culbreith was subsequently suspended 2 games (returns Sunday) for his incompetence. MLB suits claimed that the umps weren't sufficiently schooled on the particular rule. Please.

Now, here's the solution to the Oakland-Cleveland problem. MLB already said that they can't change the result. Wrong! There is a precedent to be set. You go back to the point of controversy. Game's on the line. You put the teams back out on the field, and erase everything that happened after the review. Will it change the result? We don't know. MLB didn't want to have egg on its collective corporate face 2 days in a row, so they had to punish Culbreith, who has less seniority than Hernandez, to set an example. However, the right thing to do is to add 2 extra umps on the field, like they do for the All Star Game and post-season play, and one more in the replay booth, utilizing a system not specifically unlike what's used in the NFL.

We know Selig is a moron as a commissioner, but how did we know he also hired idiots as umpires? For that, Selig, Hernandez, & Culbreith all get the Dunce Cap this week.

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