Bill Hall rips umpire after being tossed from last night’s game

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Bill Hall was ejected from last night’s game in the seventh inning for arguing balls and strikes and today the Astros infielder had plenty to say about home plate umpire Tom Hallion.

Zachary Levine of the Houston Chronicle has the full transcript of Hall’s angry rant about Hallion yelling at him to get back into the batter’s box and ultimately tossing him, but here’s an excerpt:

I didn’t really say anything to him, and once I got out of the box, he was yelling at me, cussing me out, telling me to get the [expletive] in the box. …After I swung and missed at the third one, I cussed myself out. I didn’t look towards him. I said “dammit” going back to the dugout, and he threw me out of the game. It was just ridiculous. The whole situation was ridiculous.

It’s amazing how umpires can get away with so much stuff and nothing happens to them. It’s all about them trying to get something on ESPN punching someone out or getting their spot on ESPN. I have no idea. It’s getting ridiculous. It’s gotten worse over the last few years, and hopefully somehow some way it can be calmed down a little bit because it’s a little out of hand.

I’m sure Hall was far from a totally innocent bystander for whatever took place leading up to his ejection, but it’s certainly tough to argue with his larger point about umpires needing to be reigned in significantly. Regardless of whether their actual calls are right or wrong, escalating situations with confrontational behavior is something that has no real value whatsoever.

Or as Hall put it: “They just need to calm down.”

Phillies, Red Sox interested in Carlos Santana

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The Phillies and Red Sox appear intent on pursuing free agent first baseman Carlos Santana, MLB Network’s Jon Morosi reports. Santana rejected a one-year, $17.4 million qualifying offer from the Indians on Thursday and is expected to draw widespread interest on the market this winter. The Mets, Mariners, Angels and Indians could make a play for the infielder, though no serious offers have been made this early in the offseason.

Santana, 31, is coming off of a seven-year track with the Indians. He batted .259/.363/.455 with 23 home runs and 3.0 fWAR last season, making 2017 the fourth-most valuable year of his career to date. Although he was primarily stationed at first base over the last year, he could step back into a hybrid first base/DH role with the Red Sox, who are hurting for infield depth with Hanley Ramirez still working his way back from shoulder surgery.

As for Santana’s other suitors, the Mariners are far less likely to pursue a deal after trading for Ryon Healy last Wednesday. Neither the Mets nor the Phillies have a DH spot to offer the veteran infielder, and the Phillies’ Rhys Hoskins appears to be blocking the way at first base. Then again, Santana may not find a more enticing offer outside of Cleveland, where Edwin Encarnacion might otherwise be the club’s best option at first base. During the GM meetings, Indians’ GM Mike Chernoff said he “love to have both [Santana and Jay Bruce] back” in 2018, but hasn’t backed up that love with any contract talks just yet.