Winter ball is a great place for young players to work on things or to stay in shape during the offseason. Or for really, really old players too, apparently, as Enrique Rojas reports that Jamie Moyer will pitch for the Escogido Lions in Dominican Winter League this year. This is clearly as sign that the nearly 48-year-old Moyer wants to continue pitching, and will use the winter to get back into playing shape after missing the second half of the season.
Or maybe it’s just a boondoggle, and Moyer is looking for a free trip to Santo Domingo. I hear he hasn’t been there since the heady mercenary days of El grito de Capotillo and the Restoration War and is feeling nostalgic for the place.
Major League Baseball has announced the umpiring crew for the World Series. John Hirschbeck is the crew chief. It’s his fifth World Series assignment, third as a crew chief.
A surprising name on the crew is Joe West. It’ll be his sixth World Series overall, but first since 2012. There had been chatter for several years that Major League Baseball was making a more concerted effort to get its best umpires into the World Series more often while minimizing the appearances of its weakest umpires. Most assumed West’s absence from the Fall Classic in recent years, despite his seniority, was a function of that. Maybe they’re still making merit a priority and maybe West has just improved? I’ll leave that for you to judge.
Anyway, here is the lineup of umps for Game 1. They will rotate after that, of course. If the series goes six games, Cowboy Joe will be calling the balls and strikes:
Home plate: Larry Vanover
1B: Chris Guccione
2B: John Hirschbeck
3B: Marvin Hudson
LF: Tony Randazzo
RF: Joe West
Replay Official for Games 1-2: Sam Holbrook (with assistance from Todd Tichenor)
Replay Official for Games 3-7: Larry Vanover (with assistance from Todd Tichenor)