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Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Former American League umpire Marty Springstead is dead at age 74

Marty Springstead, who at the age of 36 in 1973 became the youngest umpire crew chief in World Series history, has died. He was 74.

Major League Baseball said Wednesday that Springstead was found dead at his home in Florida on Tuesday night.

A native of Nyack, N.Y., Springstead was an American League umpire from 1966-85. Among his three World Series were 1978 and 1983, and he also was an umpire at the All-Star game in 1969, 1975 and 1982 and at five AL championship series.

After retiring from the field, he became the AL’s executive director of umpires, then worked as an umpire supervisor for MLB after umpire staffs from the leagues merged.

He retired from his management position before the 2010 season.

“For a quarter-century, Marty mentored a new generation of our umpires, not only in the major leagues but around the world,” Commissioner Bud Selig said. “Marty was an avid teacher, a great storyteller and a friend to countless people around our game. Like so many of my colleagues, I always appreciated his wonderful sense of humor and the pride he had for his profession.”

Thanks to Rod Nelson.

Repoz Posted: January 18, 2012 at 04:09 PM | 9 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: history, obituaries

Reader Comments and Retorts

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Statements posted here are those of our readers and do not represent the BaseballThinkFactory. Names are provided by the poster and are not verified. We ask that posters follow our submission policy. Please report any inappropriate comments.

   1. Captain Joe Bivens, Pointless and Wonderful Posted: January 18, 2012 at 08:09 PM (#4039839)
I'm sure he was very proud of his son, Bruce.
   2. Captain Joe Bivens, Pointless and Wonderful Posted: January 18, 2012 at 08:10 PM (#4039841)
Condolences to the Springstead family. Don't mind me.
   3. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: January 18, 2012 at 08:16 PM (#4039843)
Apology and forgiveness have no place here at all
At the wall
   4. Lassus Posted: January 18, 2012 at 08:30 PM (#4039850)
Marty was definitely not in the best of health in 2008 when he was helping to supervise the replay booth at MLB.com. I'm sorry to see he didn't really improve, he was very pleasant to be around.
   5. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: January 18, 2012 at 10:05 PM (#4039905)
Marty had some great lines about Earl Weaver

   6. JC in DC Posted: January 18, 2012 at 10:47 PM (#4039933)
I want to thank Lassus and HW for their revealing insights into Springstead. Your anecdotes really added depth to my view of Springstead. I'm still laughing at the thought of some of those great lines about Weaver!
   7. Crispix Attacksel Rios Posted: January 18, 2012 at 10:54 PM (#4039939)
Whoa, just imagine how angry JC in DC would be if someone wrote "Never saw him umpire."
   8. billyjack Posted: January 19, 2012 at 10:06 AM (#4040111)
The first thing that comes to mind is the forfeited game at Toronto vs O's where bricks were holding the bullpen tarps in place. Weaver said it was too dangerous for his players to be out there with bricks, and Springstead said they could stay, so Weaver pulled his team off the field. This was in old Exhibition Stadium.

EDIT: September 15, 1977. Blue Jays up 4-0 in 5th, win on forfeit.
   9. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: January 19, 2012 at 10:38 AM (#4040141)
My goal was to encourage others to read about Marty

I was not aware there posters who either wish to be spoonfed or are unfamiliar with Internet search capabilities

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