MLB Suspends Umpire For One Game

Major League Baseball has handed down a one game suspension to umpire Bob Davidson for “repeated violations of Commissioner’s Office standards for situation handling.”

The timing of the suspension, the first of which I can remember since Mike Winters was suspended for the Milton Bradley incident, is curious given the outrage that Brett Lawrie’s … uh … outrage caused earlier this week on questionable strike two and three calls from umpire Bill Miller after the young third baseman began his trot to first base before the veteran ump had made a call for ball four.

However, Lawrie’s (allegedly) Red Bull induced temper tantrum only served to hog the spotlight from another umpire being umpire incident that occurred this week between the aforementioned Davidson and Philadelphia Phillies manager Charlie Manuel.

I’m not a professional lip reader, but it appears from the clip above that Davidson has an affinity for the phrase, “Fuck you, Charlie.” If that isn’t enough, this is the umpire that once threw the beloved Montreal Expos mascot Youppi out of a game.

Davidson has a reputation for his short tempter, and it’s further evidenced by his high ejection rate which is more than two times the league average. Other than his lack anger management skills, the umpire is also known for his proficiency in calling subjective balks, which while maddening for pitchers, did lead to this hilarious tweet.

On the good side, Davidson did admit he was wrong one time, merely saying, “I fucked it up,” which in my mind, at least, is an entirely reasonable excuse from time to time.

From BrooksBaseball.net, here are Davidson’s strike zones vs. right handed and left handed batters:

RHB:

LHB:

Despite my anti-robot umpire (but pro-robocop umpire) stance, I think it’s good that umpire’s are held accountable, not just for the calls they make, but their behaviour in dealing with confrontations, as this suspension seems to be for.

But of course, in the interest of full disclosure, I’ve always had an axe to grind against Davidson, because of this:

Charlie Manuel was also suspended for one game due to his tirade.