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March 31, 2014 | By Houston Mitchell
Ever wonder just how accurate major league umpires are at calling balls and strikes? They obviously aren't as accurate as us fans sitting in the seats -- after all, we're always right. But what percentage of ball/strike calls would you guess that umpires botch? 5%? 8%? Would you believe 14%? Researchers Brayden King and Jerry Kim analyzed more than 700,000 pitches thrown during the 2008 and 2009 seasons and found that about 14% of non-swinging pitches were called erroneously.
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April 25, 2014 | From staff and wire reports
A clarification by Major League Baseball has determined that fielders attempting to turn a double play after forcing out a runner must have complete control of the ball in their glove, but the ball can be dropped after the player intentionally opens their glove for the transfer to the throwing hand. The use of instant replay this season caused the need for clarification by the rules committee, which MLB said has been agreed to by the players' association and umpires' union. Previously, some umpires ruled that the ball needed to at least be removed from the glove in a transfer attempt.
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SPORTS
May 10, 2013 | By Bill Shaikin
The official word from Major League Baseball is that the umpiring fiasco in Thursday's game between the Angels and Houston Astros is that "the matter is being reviewed. " However, since MLB already has acknowledged the umpires ruled in error, the real matter left for review is how the umps should be disciplined. They should be suspended, all four of them. First and foremost, the umpires should be suspended because they failed in knowing the rules they are paid to enforce.
SPORTS
March 31, 2014 | By Houston Mitchell
Ever wonder just how accurate major league umpires are at calling balls and strikes? They obviously aren't as accurate as us fans sitting in the seats -- after all, we're always right. But what percentage of ball/strike calls would you guess that umpires botch? 5%? 8%? Would you believe 14%? Researchers Brayden King and Jerry Kim analyzed more than 700,000 pitches thrown during the 2008 and 2009 seasons and found that about 14% of non-swinging pitches were called erroneously.
SPORTS
August 5, 2011 | By Bill Plaschke, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
In the eternal conflict between baseball's uniformed personnel and umpires, it's the dog-you days of summer. The temperatures soar, the season drags, and everyone wants a piece of each other. Managers charge umpires. Players scream at umpires. Entire teams physically restrain star players who are literally attempting to attack umpires, which, by the way, looks especially dumb. It's so bad, the other day I saw Boston Manager Terry Francona arguing with an umpire who had just made a home-run call after examining instant replay.
SPORTS
November 1, 2009 | Kevin Baxter
Jeff Nelson was the umpire closest to Alex Rodriguez's fourth-inning line drive into the right-field corner. But he didn't have the best view of it. "In this particular play the ball hit something hard, solid," he said. "In my judgment it was the top of the fence." Another umpire, Joe West , thought the ball hit a fan. That left enough doubt among the six-man officiating crew for crew chief Gerry Davis to ask for a video replay, the first time an umpire has done that in postseason history.
SPORTS
February 27, 1991 | From Staff and Wire Reports
Major league umpires do not expect a strike this season, the head of their union said Tuesday. General counsel Richie Phillips met with umpires for five hours to prepare for today's discussion with baseball officials on a new contract and saw some progress. Phillips said the two sides "were very far apart, but not at an impasse." He added: "I have recommended the umpires not engage in any kind of work stoppage. . . .
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August 11, 1999 | Times Wire Services
The umpires' union withdrew its lawsuit against baseball Tuesday, leaving the National Labor Relations Board as the last hope for 22 umpires who want their jobs back. The move came just before the American and National leagues were to file a motion to dismiss the case. The leagues, claiming the suit was frivolous, had planned to ask for legal sanctions against the umpires' union and its lawyers.
SPORTS
April 28, 1999 | From Associated Press
Arguments between managers and umpires and players and umpires are nothing new to baseball. Now, it's the league office the men in blue have a problem with. Major league umpires are angry over baseball's new directive asking teams to chart pitches and file a report about strike zones. "It's nonsensical when you look at it," Richie Phillips, head of the umpires' union, told the New York Post. "It's juvenile. It's just another case of Big Brother watching over us."
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September 5, 1990 | From Associated Press
National League President Bill White and the umpires settled their dispute Tuesday with help from Commissioner Fay Vincent, agreeing to set a policy for breaking up fights that will not single out umpire Joe West. "I'm happy it's resolved and that we can get on to other things," Vincent said after meeting in New York with White and the umpires' union chief, Richie Phillips. "We're pleased with today's resolution," Phillips said. "Joe West will be treated like all umpires."
SPORTS
March 12, 2014 | By Mike DiGiovanna
TEMPE, Ariz. - Angels second baseman Howie Kendrick said he will have to be more cognizant of his glove-to-hand transfer on double plays this season after umpires overturned a call involving infielder Andrew Romine in Tuesday's exhibition game against the Seattle Mariners. With the bases loaded and one out in the eighth inning, Romine, playing second base, dropped the ball while trying to turn a double play. The play was initially ruled a force out, but the call was overturned after an instant-replay review, the umpires determining Romine did not have possession of the ball.
SPORTS
March 3, 2014 | By Mike DiGiovanna
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz.  - The Angels put baseball's new instant-replay system or, to be more precise, a crude facsimile of what will be used in the regular season, to the test for the first time Monday at Salt River Fields. It did not go well, with Manager Mike Scioscia losing his challenge to overturn a call at second base in the second inning of the Angels' 3-2 exhibition victory over the Arizona Diamondbacks. The process delayed the game for 2 minutes 31 seconds. But in defense of Scioscia and Nick Francona , the coordinator of major league information who will man the video-replay monitor for the Angels this season, the decision to challenge was based on a replay from one camera.
SPORTS
February 24, 2014 | By Kevin Baxter
During his six seasons as a coach for the San Diego Padres, Rick Renteria frequently reviewed videotape of what he believed were umpires' questionable calls. That experience led him to one unmistakable conclusion: Major League Baseball umpires are not always right. But they usually are, far more often than not. "It's been a very high rate of success on the umpires' side," Renteria says. This season, Renteria's first as manager of the Chicago Cubs, will also be the first in which MLB teams can call on instant replay to challenge an umpire's call.
SPORTS
January 17, 2014 | Bill Shaikin
It happens every year. The umpire blows a call, and every fan watching on television can see it. But baseball, bound by tradition and its embrace of the so-called "human element," shrugged and went on with the game, even if the blown call was the difference between victory and defeat. No more. For the first time -- and starting this season -- Major League Baseball will permit video review of just about every call an umpire can make beyond balls and strikes. -- How will this work?
SPORTS
November 22, 2013 | Wire reports
An NFL game official was suspended Friday for one game without pay for making "a profane and derogatory statement" to a Washington Redskins player, an incident that has led to a call for NFL players to stop using the N-word on the field and in the locker room. The league announced Friday that umpire Roy Ellison will not work an NFL game this weekend as punishment for words directed at left tackle Trent Williams late in the second quarter of the Redskins' loss to the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday.
SPORTS
November 20, 2013 | Bill Dwyre
There is a leftover tidbit to this year's World Series Game 3, when umpire Jim Joyce called obstruction at third base to end the game and send the Boston Red Sox to defeat. When Joyce's father died in 2009, among the things buried with him was a Red Sox cap. "He was flipping over in his grave when I made that call," Joyce says. There are umpires and there is Jim Joyce. He doesn't want to be special, other than to have people know he does a good job. But a triangle of fate and circumstance has singled him out. Oct. 26, 2013, St. Louis, World Series Game 3 The Cardinals and Red Sox were tied in the ninth inning, 4-4, when Boston catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia rose from tagging out Yadier Molina at the plate to see Allen Craig running toward third base.
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February 28, 1999 | KEN ROSENTHAL, BALTIMORE SUN
Why did Roberto Alomar appear in such a funk last season? In the opinion of Eric Davis, it wasn't that Alomar disliked Manager Ray Miller. It wasn't that he was in the final year of his Orioles contract. It wasn't that he was frequently booed on the road. No, Davis said last week that the source of Alomar's discontent was his difficulties with American League umpires, who continue to seek retribution for his spitting on umpire John Hirschbeck in 1996.
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August 22, 1998 | Associated Press
The possibility of umpires selling balls used in David Wells' perfect game is under investigation by major league baseball. The balls used by the New York Yankee pitcher in the May 17 game reportedly were sold to a Long Island sports memorabilia dealer. Kevin Hallinan, baseball's top security official, told the New York Times that the AL asked him to investigate, but he did not provide details.
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November 12, 2013 | Chris Erskine
You can't help but smile while watching Charlie Reliford work at umpire camp in Compton, screaming at his students in a blowsy, animated style. Most good teachers seem to have outsize personalities and an undeniable charisma. That's Reliford, a screaming tyrant one moment, funny and endearing the next. Think Jackie Gleason with brick dust in his shoes. "Have you guys ever actually seen a baseball game before?" he yells after one blown call. You probably remember Reliford best from Game 2 of the 2000 World Series.
SPORTS
October 28, 2013 | By A.J. Ellis
Dodgers catcher A.J. Ellis will be offering his analysis throughout the World Series. Ellis, 32, recently completed his second full season as a starter for the Dodgers by batting .333 in a National League division series against the Atlanta Braves and .316 in the NL Championship Series against the St. Louis Cardinals. Ellis is familiar with the Boston Red Sox, a team the Dodgers faced during the regular season. The group of men who are on your television screen and involved on every pitch of the most important series of the year, only have one goal - to not be noticed.
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