ESPN Boston’s Gordon Edes reports that Cowboy Joe West — late of his “if you think I can’t be an even bigger embarrassment than I already am then you seriously understimate me” tour of the Cleveland-Chisox series, will be working the Red Sox-Royals series in Fenway Park this weekend. This a month after he called the Red Sox and Yankees “pathetic” and “embarrassing” due to their pace of play.
Usually you don’t know where umps will be before the games, but we know about West, Edes reports, because “a publicist who lists West as one of his clients and
said that West is ‘available for media interviews and guest
appearances'” in Boston this weekend.
An umpire with a publicist? Methinks that Ozzie Guillen’s claim that West wants to make himself the show has more than a little truth to it.
The Giants placed outfielder Hunter Pence on the 10-day disabled list with a right thumb sprain, per an official announcement on Friday. Pence initially sustained the injury during the club’s home opener on April 3, when he dove to intercept a line drive double from Robinson Cano and jammed his thumb. Weeks of playing through the pain hasn’t worked, so he’ll take a breather while the Giants give outfielder Mac Williamson a chance to start in left after getting called up from Triple-A Fresno.
Pence, 35, wouldn’t pin his recent struggles on his injury, but it’s clear that he’s having difficulty finding his footing this year. He slashed a meager .172/.197/.190 through 61 plate appearances in 2018, collecting just one extra-base hit and two walks during the Giants’ dismal 7-11 stretch. While it’s far too early in the season to make any final judgments, it doesn’t look like the veteran outfielder will be replicating the .275+ average, 4.0+ fWAR totals of years past (at least, not anytime soon).
Williamson, meanwhile, has gotten off to a hot start in Triple-A. Prior to his call-up this weekend, the 27-year-old batted an incredible .487/.600/1.026 with six home runs and a 1.626 OPS through his first 50 PA. A hot Triple-A bat doesn’t always survive the transition to the majors, but the Giants will use all the help they can get — especially as they take on the AL West-leading Angels this weekend.