Baseball for the Thinking Fan

Login | Register | Feedback

btf_logo
You are here > Home > Baseball Newsstand > Baseball Primer Newsblog > Discussion
Baseball Primer Newsblog
— The Best News Links from the Baseball Newsstand

Tuesday, July 07, 2020

MLB umpire Joe West says U.S. coronavirus deaths aren’t actually from coronavirus

In an interview with The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal, West somewhat irresponsibly says he believes that many of the nation’s COVID-19 deaths — of which there are roughly 130,000 — actually don’t have anything to do with the coronavirus.

“I said, ‘Look, most of these people that they’re reporting are dying are not healthy to begin with. I’ve lost 25 pounds over the winter. I’m playing golf every day in the heat. I’m fine. I’m not going to back down now.’

“I don’t believe in my heart that all these deaths have been from the coronavirus,” West continued. “I believe it may have contributed to some of the deaths. I said, ‘I’m not going to opt out. I’m going to work. And I’m going to work until you take me off the field or I get hurt, whatever. I’m working.’”

With roughly 130,000 coronavirus deaths in the United States, West’s take is an interesting. Per the CDC, those 130,000 deaths have all been caused by the coronavirus.

Not the first time West would be wrong on who is safe.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: July 07, 2020 at 11:26 AM | 55 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: joe west

Reader Comments and Retorts

Go to end of page

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. Ziggy: social distancing since 1980 Posted: July 07, 2020 at 11:46 AM (#5961455)
Yes Joe, your heart is totally the correct organ to believe with.
   2. the virus could be killed by injecting 57i66135 Posted: July 07, 2020 at 11:58 AM (#5961459)
"it's not the fall, it's the landing" could be a reasonable point of view on this, i guess. probably not, but maybe.


"those people should be dead anyway" is a somewhat less reasonable one.


go #### yourself, joe buck.
   3. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: July 07, 2020 at 12:00 PM (#5961461)
Seems like a good excuse to fire this #######. I hope they take him up on the invitation.
   4. depletion Posted: July 07, 2020 at 12:26 PM (#5961476)
If I was a marketing guy for the Wonderlic test company I would put a picture of Joe West in all my advertising material.
   5. JRVJ Posted: July 07, 2020 at 12:38 PM (#5961479)
Does Joe West live in Florida, by any chance?
   6. asinwreck Posted: July 07, 2020 at 12:45 PM (#5961484)
Joe West, making judgment calls as well as he always has.
   7. villageidiom Posted: July 07, 2020 at 12:46 PM (#5961485)
go #### yourself, joe buck.
I mean, I'm not going to disagree with the sentiment you're expressing. I'm just questioning the need to express it in a Joe West thread.
   8. bachslunch Posted: July 07, 2020 at 12:56 PM (#5961488)
As if we needed another reason to dislike this idiot. And down 25 pounds is really a drop in the bucket in his case.
   9. Ron J Posted: July 07, 2020 at 12:56 PM (#5961489)
#7 Autocomplete. He just typed go #### yourself, joe

   10. I am Ted F'ing Williams Posted: July 07, 2020 at 01:03 PM (#5961491)
Also not the first time Ken Rosenthal has been wrong on facts.
   11. the virus could be killed by injecting 57i66135 Posted: July 07, 2020 at 01:09 PM (#5961492)
I mean, I'm not going to disagree with the sentiment you're expressing. I'm just questioning the need to express it in a Joe West thread.
there's never bad time.

though i will go out of my way to complement joe buck on his work as a character actor.
#7 Autocomplete. He just typed go #### yourself, joe
no autocorrect involved.
   12. Adam Starblind Posted: July 07, 2020 at 01:09 PM (#5961493)
Yes Joe, your heart is totally the correct organ to believe with.


It's also totally full of chocolate.
   13. PreservedFish Posted: July 07, 2020 at 01:09 PM (#5961494)
He's probably just an idiot, but if I squint I can imagine that with different context and emphasis he's just awkwardly relaying the fact that so many that have died have had pre-existing health problems. If he's really lost 25 lbs in an effort to improve his body's response, it indicates that he's actually taking it somewhat seriously. But he's probably just an idiot.
   14. manchestermets Posted: July 07, 2020 at 01:10 PM (#5961495)
And I’m going to work until you take me off the field


Is this not a pretty good reason to stop him going on the field in the first place? You can't trust him to comply with whatever protocols they put in place, can you?
   15. Itchy Row Posted: July 07, 2020 at 01:16 PM (#5961498)
And I’m going to work until you take me off the field or I get hurt
How about both? I'll leave it to MLB to decide whether to hurt him on the field or to take him off before they hurt him.
   16. Mayor Blomberg Posted: July 07, 2020 at 01:21 PM (#5961500)
13 - An in another context his bad calls are expressing the truth that strikes and outs are the result of performative, not independent beings. Of course, in that world he's not the chucklehead he so manifestly is.
   17. Captain Joe Bivens, Elderly Northeastern Jew Posted: July 07, 2020 at 01:22 PM (#5961501)
Does Joe West live in Florida, by any chance?


I know he winters there, at least.
   18. JRVJ Posted: July 07, 2020 at 01:26 PM (#5961503)
17, that explains a lot.
   19. Rally Posted: July 07, 2020 at 01:30 PM (#5961506)
With roughly 130,000 coronavirus deaths in the United States, West’s take is an interesting. Per the CDC, those 130,000 deaths have all been caused by the coronavirus.


Does the CDC actually say that? Almost certainly a false statement. If someone is 95 years old, has multiple health problems, and on top of that contracts coronavirus and dies, then from what I understand it would be recorded as a death by coronavirus, but that may not be the specific cause of death.

On the other side there are people who were killed by coronavirus, but never tested and not so recorded as such. On net, the excess death figures I saw reported last week make it look like the official count is an undercount by about 10-20%. So I have no reason to doubt that 130,000 figure, and that the real figure is north of that. But at the same time, pick some cases out of the official 130,000, and you'll almost certainly find that not every single one actually died of coronavirus. More accurately, they died with coronavirus.

I am not sure if my grandmother will be counted in that 130,000 figure. She died last weekend at age 99. She had coronavirus, and dementia, and was not in good health. But she actually beat coronavirus. We feared the worst when we found out she had it, but she soldiered through, recovered, tested negative a multiple times, and was able to move back to her regular nursing home. Then a few weeks later she died. Coronavirus certainly didn't help, and it likely contributed in weakening her already compromised system.
   20. puck Posted: July 07, 2020 at 01:36 PM (#5961509)
If he's really lost 25 lbs in an effort to improve his body's response, it indicates that he's actually taking it somewhat seriously. But he's probably just an idiot.


Seems a guy that big could be down 25lbs due to dehydration.
   21. Adam Starblind Posted: July 07, 2020 at 01:44 PM (#5961513)
With roughly 130,000 coronavirus deaths in the United States, West’s take is an interesting. Per the CDC, those 130,000 deaths have all been caused by the coronavirus.


Does the CDC actually say that? Almost certainly a false statement. If someone is 95 years old, has multiple health problems, and on top of that contracts coronavirus and dies, then from what I understand it would be recorded as a death by coronavirus, but that may not be the specific cause of death.


The specific cause of anyone's death is heart failure, but we aren't silly enough to write that on every death certificate. Every adult of a certain age is walking around with various health attributes that make them more or less vulnerable to the consequences of some other health event; eventually something finishes them off. We call that the cause of death, even though many people die due to multiple factors.
   22. Zonk. Person. Man. Camera. TV. Posted: July 07, 2020 at 02:32 PM (#5961520)
Not that it's a perfect and plug-and-play number to use - but obviously, we have plenty of mortality statistics so we do know generally how many Americans die sans a pandemic...

The data strongly suggests that if anything, we've significantly under-counted COVID-related deaths...
   23. Rough Carrigan Posted: July 07, 2020 at 02:43 PM (#5961524)
That's funny, Dr. Birx said, back in April, that we're counting as covid-19 deaths deaths that are really from other causes. Here's her quote:


DR. DEBORAH BIRX: So, I think in this country we've taken a very liberal approach to mortality. And I think the reporting here has been pretty straightforward over the last five to six weeks. Prior to that when there wasn't testing in January and February that's a very different situation and unknown.

There are other countries that if you had a preexisting condition and let's say the virus caused you to go to the ICU and then have a heart or kidney problem some countries are recording as a heart issue or a kidney issue and not a COVID-19 death. Right now we are still recording it and we will I mean the great thing about having forms that come in and a form that has the ability to market as COVID-19 infection the intent is right now that those if someone dies with COVID-19 we are counting that as a COVID-19 death.


   24. Walks Clog Up the Bases Posted: July 07, 2020 at 02:43 PM (#5961525)
I won't turn down yet another reason to think Joe West is a shithead.
   25. Zonk. Person. Man. Camera. TV. Posted: July 07, 2020 at 02:53 PM (#5961527)
This is more than a month dated -- but basically, beyond/excluding the (then) "official" (or pseudo-official) count, US mortality was still 28% higher than normal...

Of course- that excess mortality could also be a matter of any number of things... drug overdoses have increased... many places did suspend non-essential surgery... etc.

But still - the data is pretty clear... we have nearly 4 good months of data now.
   26. Buck Coats Posted: July 07, 2020 at 02:54 PM (#5961528)

though i will go out of my way to complement joe buck on his work as a character actor.


He was pretty good as the lead in Midnight Cowboy, too
   27. Kiko Sakata Posted: July 07, 2020 at 02:56 PM (#5961529)
Dr. Birx said, back in April, that we're counting as covid-19 deaths deaths that are really from other causes.


The excerpt you quoted doesn't say this. Specifically,

let's say the virus caused you to go to the ICU and then have a heart or kidney problem some countries are recording as a heart issue or a kidney issue and not a COVID-19 death. Right now we are still recording it


She's saying - COVID ("the virus") "cause[s]" "a heart of kidney problem" - she's saying the "cause of death" is COVID, which, I mean it is - it's right there, word for word in what she's saying. To the extent that she's passing a judgment one way or the other (and it reads to me that she's trying very hard to explicitly avoid passing any kind of judgment), she's pretty clearly criticizing other countries for NOT counting that.
   28. Jeremy Renner App is Dead and I killed it Posted: July 07, 2020 at 03:03 PM (#5961533)
Isn't West the guy in any profession that the only reason you listen to him is because he has the job where you have some obligation to listen as professional courtesy? If West left baseball tomorrow would anyone listen to him even on baseball stuff? Maybe that Chass guy I guess
   29. RJ in TO Posted: July 07, 2020 at 03:29 PM (#5961541)
Joe West is the guy in any profession who, when he speaks, you spend your time planning your to do list in your head until he's done, and then make the sarcastic jerking off motion after he leaves the room, to the amusement of the co-workers who were still there because they were thinking the same thing.
   30. Mayor Blomberg Posted: July 07, 2020 at 03:55 PM (#5961549)
She's saying - COVID ("the virus") "cause[s]" "a heart of kidney problem" - she's saying the "cause of death" is COVID, which, I mean it is - it's right there, word for word in what she's saying. To the extent that she's passing a judgment one way or the other (and it reads to me that she's trying very hard to explicitly avoid passing any kind of judgment), she's pretty clearly criticizing other countries for NOT counting that.


But you're explaining this to someone who is the moral equivalent of Clapper.
   31. For the Turnstiles (andeux) Posted: July 07, 2020 at 04:18 PM (#5961554)
Politicians ugly buildings and whores all get respectable if they last long enough, but Joe West will always be horseshit.
   32. Adam Starblind Posted: July 07, 2020 at 04:46 PM (#5961561)

That's funny, Dr. Birx said, back in April, that we're counting as covid-19 deaths deaths that are really from other causes. Here's her quote:


That's funny, did you notice your quote doesn't say what you say it says?
   33. Hank Gillette Posted: July 07, 2020 at 08:12 PM (#5961604)
Overcome by events.
   34. Starring Bradley Scotchman as RMc Posted: July 08, 2020 at 06:12 AM (#5961632)
And down 25 pounds is really a drop in the bucket in his case.


Yes Joe, your heart is totally the correct organ to believe with.

It's also totally full of chocolate.


Ah, it does my heart good to know that we're still allowed to make fun of fat people(*) in this country.

*Assuming they're white males, of course.
   35. Captain Joe Bivens, Elderly Northeastern Jew Posted: July 08, 2020 at 07:18 AM (#5961633)
*Assuming they're white males, of course.



When you can point to any instances here where you've defended any group or individuals other than white males (fat or otherwise), I'll believe you care about these things.
   36. Adam Starblind Posted: July 08, 2020 at 07:29 AM (#5961634)

Ah, it does my heart good to know that we're still allowed to make fun of fat people(*) in this country.


The French are also fair game.
   37. Zonk. Person. Man. Camera. TV. Posted: July 08, 2020 at 07:40 AM (#5961635)
People can mock all they want, but it breaks my heart that we've forced the brave snowflake people onto crowded safe spanktuaries... forced to do perform their native passgress dances, weeping while they chant the song of their ancestors "Wooooeeee, woe is me.... woooooeee is me...", praying to the spirit of Archie Bunker to redeem them.
   38. Adam Starblind Posted: July 08, 2020 at 07:51 AM (#5961637)
praying to the spirit of Archie Bunker to redeem them.


I want to speak up for Archie here. I know you aren't trashing him; I'm just popping off.

He was a much more nuanced character than modern day sensibilities are able to admit. He was not a racist who hated people -- he was just an ignoramus who had grown up in a racist world. The character was clearly a fundamentally good man who loved and cared for his family and was even warm at times towards his black neighbors, especially the son. The show condemned racist beliefs, not on the man himself. That contrast was kind of the point. Almost like Obama's 2008 speech on race.

Great show. Very funny, which it would probably not have been if the main character had been as vile as he's portrayed today.
   39. Starring Bradley Scotchman as RMc Posted: July 08, 2020 at 01:24 PM (#5961713)
When you can point to any instances here where you've defended any group or individuals other than white males (fat or otherwise), I'll believe you care about these things.

It's not my job to "defend" anybody, Sparky. And I don't give a sh!t what you believe.

(Archie Bunker) was a much more nuanced character than modern day sensibilities are able to admit.

Even watching the show in 2020, it's a tough choice on who to root for: the antediluvian Archie or the smug liberal kids. (That's why everybody loved Edith.)
   40. Captain Joe Bivens, Elderly Northeastern Jew Posted: July 08, 2020 at 05:50 PM (#5961779)
It's not my job to "defend" anybody, Sparky.


You have a soft spot for fat white males, though.
   41. dejarouehg Posted: July 09, 2020 at 08:59 AM (#5961863)
I don't think it's so terrible to recognize that Joe West losing 25 lbs is the proverbial "tick on the elephant's ass," but good for him. Hopefully, he'll continue to lose more, if that's what he wants, and I'm sure he'll look a little better with one less chin flap.

Notwithstanding his arrogance, I think he's a lot closer to Lord than to Angel Hernandez on the umpiring efficiency scale.

But, he should have been severely reprimanded for foisting his CD on players, especially young players. What were they supposed to do? Say, "you know Joe, I really don't like country music, but good luck with that singing career."

With re: to All In The Family, clearly no chance it could get made today.
   42. Zonk. Person. Man. Camera. TV. Posted: July 09, 2020 at 09:59 AM (#5961868)
With re: to All In The Family, clearly no chance it could get made today.


It wouldn't get made today because it's just not relevant - and that's good thing, not a bad thing.

I agree with Adam that it was a wonderfully nuanced show - and Carroll O'Connor's Archie Bunker was (almost? was?) equal to the template the show was built on (Warren Mitchell's Alf Garnett).

The well-done subtext required the context where yes, neighborhoods went to great to lengths to keep the blacks and the Jews and whomever from moving into their neighborhoods. It wouldn't get made today because nobody is going to be interested in a comedy predicated on the star opening the show the praising his neighbor for standing up for keeping a Jewish family from buying a house on the block with the kicker that he just sold his house to a black family. Again... this is a good thing.

In a 21st century context, it does still get made today... it's just not very good because it's a fairly tedious endeavor, written by lazy writers, with a not-very-good star (I'm thinking here of Tim Allen's current vehicle).
   43. JJ1986 Posted: July 09, 2020 at 01:44 PM (#5961900)
Joe West is definitely getting his information from nutjob conspiracy theorists:
“Those statistics aren’t accurate, I don’t care who’s counting them,’’ West said from his Florida home. “When country music [singer] Joe Diffie died, they said he died of the coronavirus. He had Stage 4 lung cancer. The coronavirus may have accelerated his death, but let’s be realistic.”

“Our system is so messed up they have emptied hospitals because there’s no elective surgery. The government has been giving these hospitals extra money if someone dies of the coronavirus. So everybody that dies is because of coronavirus. I don’t care if you get hit by a car, it’s coronavirus.’’
   44. Captain Joe Bivens, Elderly Northeastern Jew Posted: July 09, 2020 at 03:53 PM (#5961926)
Some people seem to pay selective attention. It's clear that, from the onset of cases, that people with compromised medical situations were in danger from COVID, so it isn't a stretch to say that COVID killed them, or, conversely, absent COVID, the vast majority of the 130K plus that have died from it would still be alive.
   45. Mayor Blomberg Posted: July 09, 2020 at 04:08 PM (#5961929)
“When country music [singer] Joe Diffie died, they said he died of the coronavirus. He had Stage 4 lung cancer. The coronavirus may have accelerated his death, but let’s be realistic.”


Potential arguments to keep in mind if, god forbid, I'm involved in a fatal car wreck.
   46. PreservedFish Posted: July 09, 2020 at 04:52 PM (#5961939)
I googled Joe Diffie, and guess what, this is a thing.

Joe Diffie's family speaks out against conspiracy theories about country star's death

Apparently the rumor that he died of lung cancer was started by literally one random guy on Facebook. Although I suppose we have to consider that Joe Diffie's family is in on the conspiracy!
   47. Ziggy: social distancing since 1980 Posted: July 09, 2020 at 05:16 PM (#5961949)
Sometimes I think that it would be best if we quit reporting on nutjobs. Whenever someone writes an article about Aubrey Huff or Joe West or whomever, with the intention of saying "hey guys, look at this craziness!", you are giving them an opportunity to spread their craziness.
   48. Zonk. Person. Man. Camera. TV. Posted: July 09, 2020 at 05:19 PM (#5961950)
Sometimes I think that it would be best if we quit reporting on nutjobs. Whenever someone writes an article about Aubrey Huff or Joe West or whomever, with the intention of saying "hey guys, look at this craziness!", you are giving them an opportunity to spread their craziness.


I don't know... much as we'd be better off, we can't really pretend the country is temporarily without a President...
   49. Kiko Sakata Posted: July 09, 2020 at 05:43 PM (#5961954)
Sometimes I think that it would be best if we quit reporting on nutjobs. Whenever someone writes an article about Aubrey Huff or Joe West or whomever, with the intention of saying "hey guys, look at this craziness!", you are giving them an opportunity to spread their craziness.


That was my first reaction to this story. I don't know that this article really needed to be posted here. I mean, I get how it relates to baseball, but, really, the fact that Joe West is not opting out is barely news (is the lack of news really news); the fact that he's not opting out because he's a conspiracy-theorist loon is really irrelevant, certainly to baseball (and honestly, it's not entirely clear that his conspiracy-theorist lunacy is really the reason he's not opting out anyway; I'm guessing the dude just likes his job, which, I mean, good for him).
   50. Mayor Blomberg Posted: July 09, 2020 at 05:43 PM (#5961955)
The idea that hospitals get more from COVID is flat wrong. They get more from doing the surgeries that they have to put off.
   51. the virus could be killed by injecting 57i66135 Posted: July 09, 2020 at 05:50 PM (#5961956)
   52. JJ1986 Posted: July 09, 2020 at 05:52 PM (#5961957)
I don't know if this should be news or not, but reporters definitely shouldn't be quoting West's nonsense without comment. Nightengale's story tries to romanticize him.
   53. Kiko Sakata Posted: July 09, 2020 at 05:54 PM (#5961959)
reporters definitely shouldn't be quoting West's nonsense without comment


Oh, I'll 100% agree with this. I'd just stop the sentence after the word "nonsense".
   54. Mayor Blomberg Posted: July 09, 2020 at 06:11 PM (#5961965)
From ESPN

In the aftermath of comments made by veteran umpire Joe West, the Major League Baseball Umpires Association on Thursday issued a statement saying that "recent public comments" do not reflect its stance regarding the coronavirus pandemic.
   55. the virus could be killed by injecting 57i66135 Posted: July 09, 2020 at 08:59 PM (#5962001)
In the aftermath of comments made by veteran umpire Joe West, the Major League Baseball Umpires Association on Thursday issued a statement saying that "recent public comments" do not reflect its stance regarding the coronavirus pandemic.
ron munford went on to add:

"jerry west's recent comments have forced MLB to consider his presence a threat to the health and wellbeing of MLB personnel and therefore, in the best interests of baseball, he has been removed from the list of active vampires until further notice."

You must be Registered and Logged In to post comments.

 

 

<< Back to main

BBTF Partner

Dynasty League Baseball

Support BBTF

donate

Thanks to
Dock Ellis
for his generous support.

You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.

Hot Topics

NewsblogEmpty Stadium Sports Will Be Really Weird
(8859 - 12:21am, Aug 10)
Last: Mayor Blomberg

NewsblogRules for pitcher feats in 7-inning twin bills
(15 - 11:27pm, Aug 09)
Last: SoSH U at work

NewsblogOakland Athletics OF Ramon Laureano charges Houston Astros dugout, sparks brawl
(13 - 11:13pm, Aug 09)
Last: The Duke

NewsblogYankees' Aaron Boone argues with umpires about air horn being blown outside Phillies' ballpark
(1 - 11:10pm, Aug 09)
Last: The Duke

NewsblogOff the glove and over the fence! Texas Rangers’ Nick Solak homers in unique fashion.
(7 - 10:05pm, Aug 09)
Last: SoSH U at work

NewsblogWEEKEND OMNICHATTER! for August 8-9, 2010
(45 - 9:23pm, Aug 09)
Last: What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face?

Hall of Merit2021 Hall of Merit Ballot Discussion
(343 - 9:20pm, Aug 09)
Last: kcgard2

NewsblogWhat Happened to MLB's Elite First Basemen?
(10 - 9:20pm, Aug 09)
Last: Ron J

NewsblogOT - NBA Bubble Thread
(43 - 9:10pm, Aug 09)
Last: the virus could be killed by injecting 57i66135

NewsblogBA: 2020 Minor League Free Agents Will Be Eligible For Free Agency This Fall
(7 - 9:07pm, Aug 09)
Last: Ziggy: social distancing since 1980

NewsblogSource: Indians send Zach Plesac home for leaving hotel to go out in Chicago
(6 - 9:03pm, Aug 09)
Last: Ziggy: social distancing since 1980

NewsblogCubs-Cardinals series opener postponed over another positive coronavirus test
(17 - 8:44pm, Aug 09)
Last: RoyalsRetro (AG#1F)

NewsblogWhy MLB didn't use bubble plan for 2020 regular season; and what league insiders think of the decision
(7 - 8:31pm, Aug 09)
Last: What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face?

NewsblogChris Iannetta retires after Yankees send catcher to alternate site
(4 - 6:00pm, Aug 09)
Last: Tom Nawrocki

NewsblogA's bench coach sorry for 'unintentionally' making apparent Nazi salute
(86 - 5:31pm, Aug 09)
Last: Captain Joe Bivens, Elderly Northeastern Jew

Page rendered in 0.4651 seconds
48 querie(s) executed