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Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Jayson Werth speaks out following bizarre ending to Braves-Nationals

Chase d’Arnaud struck out, and the Washington Nationals were ready to celebrate their 3-1 win.

Or so they thought.

Home plate umpire C.B. Bucknor called a foul ball on the Braves catcher’s swings, and the game was extended. The grounds crew was already on the field. It was chaotic.

d’Arnaud swung and missed on the next pitch after the confusion was cleared up and the Nationals won. But Washington outfielder Jayson Werth was displeased with how the whole thing played out.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: April 19, 2017 at 12:14 AM | 37 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: jayson werth, nationals

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   1. Random Transaction Generator Posted: April 19, 2017 at 12:22 AM (#5437913)
(This is what I sent to my friend, and posted to another site...)

CB Bucknor gave a demonstration tonight (in the Nationals/Braves game) of what would happen if an umpire closed his eyes on every pitch and just guessed (by sound) if it was a ball or a strike.

From Twitter: Seven individual calls by CB Bucknor that home plate umpires across the league make "0%" of the time.

One

Two

Three


Four

Five

Six

Seven

Here is a map of every called pitch (no swings). Red ones are called strikes (they should be inside the boxes), green ones are called balls (they should be outside the boxes).

Jason Werth struck out in this at-bat without swinging his bat even once.

This was called a "foul-tip" by Bucknor.

The winning team's radio play-by-play guy tears into Bucknor's calling ability.
   2. Bote Man Posted: April 19, 2017 at 12:58 AM (#5437926)
Is there an honest disciplinary process in place for umpires? Or is their union so strong that MLB has no effective say?

I mean, there seems to be a broad consensus across players, coaches, fans, and knowledgeable commentators that Bucknor is a bad umpire, yet they keep paying him and running him out there.
   3. The Yankee Clapper Posted: April 19, 2017 at 01:16 AM (#5437928)
Did the umpires confer? And why wouldn't this be subject to replay - just too many foul tips?

EDIT: Not that replay is a better option than firing Bucknor, but if they won't get rid of him, put a camera on him.
   4. Bote Man Posted: April 19, 2017 at 01:33 AM (#5437931)
From what I'm gathering a foul-tip is not reviewable. Now, the umpires can confer with each other on just about anything AFAIK, which they did when my MASN feed came back to the game after declaring it over.

Anyway, the Nationals TOOTBLANed themselves into 2 needless outs in different innings that might've gone better for them otherwise. Then Dusty left Blake Treinen out on the mound in the 9th to stew in his own mess that he created, walking the bases loaded and then walking in the Braves' first and only run of the game. Maybe Dusty is sending a big F-U to Mike Rizzo for handing him a bullpen that is less than stellar?

tl;dr Besides Bucknor, there was plenty of blame to spread around the Nationals tonight. But, yeah, Bucknor is terrible.
   5. Shredder Posted: April 19, 2017 at 01:39 AM (#5437933)
I mean, there seems to be a broad consensus across players, coaches, fans, and knowledgeable commentators that Bucknor is a bad umpire, yet they keep paying him and running him out there.
Don't be silly. Firing Bucknor would be an admission that they employed someone who was incompetent. Much better to send an incompetent umpire out there every day than to admit that you had sent an incompetent umpire out there every day for years.
   6. Bote Man Posted: April 19, 2017 at 01:48 AM (#5437934)
So...Rob Manfred would NOT consider it???
   7. Bug Selig Posted: April 19, 2017 at 07:32 AM (#5437957)
CB Bucknor is worse at his job than any of us would be allowed to be, but I bet he knows Chase d'Arnaud isn't a catcher.

I wouldn't point this out, except that the link is from FanRag. When your whole shtick is smarmy my-gosh-we-are-smart condescension, be right.
   8. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: April 19, 2017 at 08:50 AM (#5437974)
Ok, here's the thing. The Nats catcher clearly didn't catch the pitch, the batter ran to first, and the catcher made no attempt to throw down to first. Instead, he walked out to the mound to shake the pitcher's hand. Had Bucknor not erroneously called it a foul, the game wouldn't be over, the batter would have been on first. What am I missing?
   9. Brian Posted: April 19, 2017 at 08:57 AM (#5437981)
Was flipping through on Extra Innings and one of the teams TV broadcast guys were just laying it out there, without getting excited or ranting, that year-after-year Bucknor is terrible. Don't know if I've ever heard an announcer just plainly state that it's unfathomable how MLB can keep sending this fool out there to umpire.
   10. Jose is El Absurd Pollo Posted: April 19, 2017 at 09:00 AM (#5437983)
Ok, here's the thing. The Nats catcher clearly didn't catch the pitch, the batter ran to first, and the catcher made no attempt to throw down to first. Instead, he walked out to the mound to shake the pitcher's hand. Had Bucknor not erroneously called it a foul, the game wouldn't be over, the batter would have been on first. What am I missing?


He stepped on the plate. With the bases loaded and two outs that's a force play situation. If you watch it you can see him pretty deliberately step on the plate.

And look, don't take this as any kind of defense of Bucknor who is an awful umpire and missed the call but I get what happened here. Watching the replay the ball tips of the catcher's mitt. Foul tips are as much called by sound as anything else. I mean, he blew it but I understand WHY he blew it.
   11. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: April 19, 2017 at 09:02 AM (#5437986)
#10. Ok, thanks. I missed that.
   12. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: April 19, 2017 at 09:30 AM (#5438001)
And look, don't take this as any kind of defense of Bucknor who is an awful umpire and missed the call but I get what happened here. Watching the replay the ball tips of the catcher's mitt. Foul tips are as much called by sound as anything else. I mean, he blew it but I understand WHY he blew it.
I don't know how to read that as something other than a defense of Bucknor. I don't see why it matters that they're called by sound. To the extent that's true -and I don't disagree - then every umpire calls them by sound. Well, I've been watching baseball for roughly 40 years, and I've never seen a major league umpire miss a foul tip call by that much. So presumably sound virtually never misleads like that.
   13. Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams) Posted: April 19, 2017 at 09:40 AM (#5438003)
Werth may have a future as a spokesperson. He managed to slay Bucknor without saying his name, or using the word 'blue' or 'umpire'. It was quite masterful.
   14. Tom Nawrocki Posted: April 19, 2017 at 10:03 AM (#5438019)
If you watch the replay above, you see the catcher go out to shake hands with the pitcher after stepping on the plate, and Bucknor makes no signal at all while he calmly walks down the third base line. That's why the grounds crew came out and all the rest of it - Bucknor makes no attempt to stop what everyone assumed was the end of the game. When exactly did he decide this was a foul tip?
   15. Pat Rapper's Delight (as quoted on MLB Network) Posted: April 19, 2017 at 10:04 AM (#5438020)
Quoting myself from yesterday's Umps may soon take to mic to explain replays thread:
"This replay explanation is brought to you by the American Foundation for the Blind. The American Foundation for the Blind.... expanding possibilities for people with vision loss.... even C.B. Bucknor."
   16. Jose is El Absurd Pollo Posted: April 19, 2017 at 10:33 AM (#5438041)
If you watch the replay above, you see the catcher go out to shake hands with the pitcher after stepping on the plate, and Bucknor makes no signal at all while he calmly walks down the third base line. That's why the grounds crew came out and all the rest of it - Bucknor makes no attempt to stop what everyone assumed was the end of the game. When exactly did he decide this was a foul tip?


That is so bizarre. He called the foul ball pretty quickly, basically as the catcher steps on the plate he puts his hands up but then...I don't know what was going on. At first I thought that he was thinking that the catcher was going to talk to the pitcher but then he went walking down the third base line. It's a very strange thing.
   17. JustDan Posted: April 19, 2017 at 10:45 AM (#5438056)
When exactly did he decide this was a foul tip?

At first Bucknor did raise his hands calling a foul ball. But the pitcher, catcher, batter, and everyone within 100 feet knew it wasn't and acted as if it was a swing and a miss. Then, after walking down the 3rd base line, Braves 3rd base coach Ron Washington got on Bucknor about his foul call. Only then did he call everyone back. It was very weird.
   18. Tom Nawrocki Posted: April 19, 2017 at 10:58 AM (#5438074)
He raises his hands briefly and with no emphasis before sauntering down the third base line. I was waiting for him to brush his hands together to signal foul tip.
   19. SoSH U at work Posted: April 19, 2017 at 11:03 AM (#5438081)
At first Bucknor did raise his hands calling a foul ball. But the pitcher, catcher, batter, and everyone within 100 feet knew it wasn't and acted as if it was a swing and a miss. Then, after walking down the 3rd base line, Braves 3rd base coach Ron Washington got on Bucknor about his foul call. Only then did he call everyone back. It was very weird.


So he got it wrong, realized he got it wrong based on how the players reacted and then hoped no one else noticed.
   20. Bote Man Posted: April 19, 2017 at 11:17 AM (#5438095)
It wouldn't surprise me if it's revealed some time in the future that Bucknor suffers some sort of debilitating syndrome that afflicted him rather obviously last night. I can see why he would conceal it if he knew about it, but it's apparent that something aint right, whatever the cause. It's probably better that it is some disease, because the alternative is that he has been just plain bad on his own merits for so long.
   21. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: April 19, 2017 at 11:38 AM (#5438126)
So he got it wrong, realized he got it wrong based on how the players reacted and then hoped no one else noticed.
That's the most plausible explanation I've heard.
   22. Jose is El Absurd Pollo Posted: April 19, 2017 at 11:49 AM (#5438133)
Ron Washington got on Bucknor about his foul call. Only then did he call everyone back. It was very weird.


How is the observation here anything but "it was incredibly hard."
   23. JustDan Posted: April 19, 2017 at 12:20 PM (#5438161)
I Bucknor'ed my opportunity there.
   24. Bourbon Samurai is disturbed by bagel developments Posted: April 19, 2017 at 12:28 PM (#5438163)
Man, I turned the tv off after the "first" strikeout. Glad it didn't go south.
   25. madvillain Posted: April 19, 2017 at 12:35 PM (#5438167)
CB is an absolutely atrocious ump behind the plate and a fairly decent one in the field. Can he just never be allowed to call balls and strikes?
   26. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: April 19, 2017 at 12:41 PM (#5438169)
CB is an absolutely atrocious ump behind the plate and a fairly decent one in the field. Can he just never be allowed to call balls and strikes?

Funny, I was just writing a post asking whether those who object to balls and strikes being called by cameras would still object to a particular ump who fell below a given level of accuracy being replaced by a robo-ump when behind the plate. Thoughts? Of course, that ump should just be fired and replaced by one of the presumably many minor league umps who are competent both behind the plate and in the field, but assuming the union can prevent that (which, of course, is a whole other problem).
   27. There are no words... (Met Fan Charlie) Posted: April 19, 2017 at 12:43 PM (#5438170)
CB Bucknor & Angel Hernandez

Oh, and the mummified remains of Joe West.


All need to go...
   28. There are no words... (Met Fan Charlie) Posted: April 19, 2017 at 12:46 PM (#5438173)
It's probably better that it is some disease



Alcoholism?
   29. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: April 19, 2017 at 01:04 PM (#5438186)
He raises his hands briefly and with no emphasis before sauntering down the third base line. I was waiting for him to brush his hands together to signal foul tip.


You only do that when it's caught cleanly. That's the signal that the ball is live. When a tipped ball is not caught, it's a regular old dead ball foul.
   30. Pat Rapper's Delight (as quoted on MLB Network) Posted: April 19, 2017 at 01:12 PM (#5438190)
CB is an absolutely atrocious ump behind the plate and a fairly decent one in the field.

My enduring memory of Bucknor is his performance in Game 1 of the 2009 Angels/Red Sox ALDS where he blew 4 calls at 1B that weren't even close.
   31. Jose is El Absurd Pollo Posted: April 19, 2017 at 01:15 PM (#5438192)
Funny, I was just writing a post asking whether those who object to balls and strikes being called by cameras would still object to a particular ump who fell below a given level of accuracy being replaced by a robo-ump when behind the plate.


As one who objects to robo-umps I don't think it's unreasonable to use technology to grade the umpires. In fact I think it makes a lot of sense. I'm honestly surprised no one is already doing this. Does Brooks not have something along these lines?
   32. Perry Posted: April 19, 2017 at 01:18 PM (#5438194)
Can't seem to find it now, but I've seen umpire rankings based on PitchFX data that showed Bucknor is actually about average on ball/strike accuracy. Angel Hernandez too.

   33. wjones Posted: April 19, 2017 at 01:22 PM (#5438200)
CB Bucknor & Angel Hernandez

Oh, and the mummified remains of Joe West.


All need to go...



Wow, pretty impressive set of remains....
   34. Sleepy's still holding up that little wild bouquet Posted: April 19, 2017 at 01:28 PM (#5438205)
Funny, I was just writing a post asking whether those who object to balls and strikes being called by cameras would still object to a particular ump who fell below a given level of accuracy being replaced by a robo-ump when behind the plate. Thoughts? Of course, that ump should just be fired and replaced by one of the presumably many minor league umps who are competent both behind the plate and in the field, but assuming the union can prevent that (which, of course, is a whole other problem).
An interim solution would be to put a very powerful buzzer in the umpires pocket and zap him every time he gets one wrong. Let the fans laugh when he gets goosed. That would be entertaining as well as effective.

They should also put the pitch/fx graphic on the big screen, so the umpire knows what he got wrong.
   35. Tom Nawrocki Posted: April 19, 2017 at 01:29 PM (#5438209)
You only do that when it's caught cleanly. That's the signal that the ball is live. When a tipped ball is not caught, it's a regular old dead ball foul.


Got it. Thanks for the clarification.
   36. cercopithecus aethiops Posted: April 19, 2017 at 01:40 PM (#5438217)
Werth may have a future as a spokesperson.


He definitely could do Geico ads.
   37. zachtoma Posted: April 19, 2017 at 05:47 PM (#5438457)
He definitely could do Geico ads.


Being a pitchman might be the only way he'll be able to save 15% on his car insurance any time soon.

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