Last week umpire Phil Cuzzi incorrectly called out Jayson Werth on a play at first base in the ninth inning of a 1-0 loss to the Mets, at which point Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo allegedly sought out the crew as they were leaving the field and had a verbal altercation.
Cuzzi filed a complaint against Rizzo and several Nationals players, and yesterday MLB handed down some punishments. Details are sparse, but Adam Kilgore of the Washington Post reports that Rizzo was “disciplined” and Ivan Rodriguez was fined “an undisclosed amount.”
Rizzo has yet to comment on the undisclosed discipline, but said previously that the incident with umpires was not a result of the blown call on Werth. If true that almost makes the whole thing sound worse, as it means he was seeking out umpires to scream at about something else.
Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports that the Pirates will sign reliever Felipe Rivero to a four-year contract extension that includes two club options. The total value of the deal is believed to be $22 million and each club option is worth $10 million.
Rivero, 26, did not come to an agreement with the Pirates to avoid arbitration in his first year of eligibility ahead of last Friday’s deadline. He requested a $2.9 million salary for the 2018 season while the Pirates countered at $2.4 million. This extension will cover all four years of Rivero’s arbitration eligibility and the two club options can cover his first two years of free agency as well.
Rivero was one of baseball’s best relievers last season, finishing with 21 saves, a 1.67 ERA, and an 88/20 K/BB ratio in 75 1/3 innings. The Pirates acquired him from the Nationals along with minor leaguer Taylor Hearn ahead of the 2016 non-waiver trade deadline in the Mark Melancon deal.
Presumably, Rivero’s extension was in the works before he knew anything about the Andrew McCutchen trade. He made a couple of tweets following this afternoon’s news. In one, he used only the “facepalm” emoji. The other was a .gif of The Office character Jim Halpert yelling, “What is going on?”