Peeved umps file complaint against Angels coaches

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It’s not just the Angels that have issue with the umps after last night’s game with the Red Sox. The umps have decided to fight back and file a complaint with MLB.
According to the Boston Herald, Rick Reed, the home plate umpire from last night’s game, said that he and the rest of the umpiring crew were “verbally abused” by members of the Angels coaching staff at the conclusion of the game.
“Their deportment left a lot to be desired,” Reed said.
Umpires at Fenway Park leave the playing field through the visiting dugout tunnel, which gave the Angels one more chance to voice their opinions about the ball-four call that allowed the Red Sox to tie the game in the bottom of the ninth last night.
The Herald goes on to report:

When the umpiring crew approached the dugout last night, Angels coaches could be seen jawing at them before manager Mike Scioscia could be seen waving them off.
“Mike made an attempt to calm his coaches down but I also thought he made comments that incited the situation,” said Reed.
Of the coaches’ behavior, Reed said it was “unprofessional and unbecoming of a professional team. I would think a coach or two will be regretting his actions.”

Also in the article, Reed admitted that the ball four to Nick Green, which should have been a called third strike to end the game, “very well could have been a strike.” However, he added to his explanation that catcher Mike Napoli moved his glove up after he caught it, a sales attempt that Reed interpreted as the ball was below the strike zone.
Editorial time: if Reed is really making judgments based on how the catcher catches the ball, he has no business being a umpire in major league baseball. That’s just disgusting. The pitch is a strike based on where it crosses plate, not based on what the catcher does with it afterwards. If Reed isn’t skilled enough to judge that, then he’s hopeless and he needs to resign immediately.

The Nationals expect Bryce Harper to test free agency

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Earlier this week at the Winter Meetings, Scott Boras said that he and the Washington Nationals had had preliminary discussions about a contract extension for Bryce Harper. Harper, of course, can become a free agent following the 2018 season and is widely expected to command the largest contract in baseball history.

While that may have given some Nationals fans hope that no other team would get the chance to bid on him, the Nationals are of the view that they have no shot to sign Harper before he at least tests the free agent market. From USA Today’s Bob Nightengale:

A lot of this seems like mutual posturing, doesn’t it? Boras trying to make it appear as though the he and Harper are giving the Nats a fair hearing and the Nats trying to make it appear as though, no matter what they do, Harper is going to hit the market. I tend to believe, personally, that Boras and Harper are hellbent on testing the market, but it’s possible that there is some number that the Nats can offer to head that off, right? Maybe?

Either way: big year ahead for Harper.