Ike Davis had a legit beef last night.
His swipe tag missed baserunner Steve Clevenger on a pickoff play last night, but Clevenger missed the bag and Davis got him on the second attempt. First base umpire Manny Gonzalez missed that, though, and called Clevenger safe. An argument ensued, and during the argument Davis’ glove did not miss Gonazlez, bumping up against him.
While this pic makes it look a bit shovey, the contact in action appeared incidental, but Adam Rubin spoke to an MLB exec who was watching the game who thinks Davis may see a modest fine out of it all.
Assuming this all goes the way MLB says it goes, Gonzalez, a fill-in ump from the minors, will have the bad call noted in his record.
Jim Salisbury of CSN Philly reports that the Phillies are close to signing free agent reliever Joaquin Benoit. An announcement is expected before the winter meetings end on Thursday.
Benoit, 39, has quietly been among the better relievers in baseball over the past seven years. This past season with the Mariners and Blue Jays, the right-hander put up an aggregate 2.81 ERA with a 52/24 K/BB ratio in 48 innings. That included a 0.38 ERA in 23 2/3 innings after the Jays acquired him from the Mariners.
Benoit suffered a torn calf muscle during a benches-clearing brawl with the Yankees near the end of the regular season. He’s expected to be healthy for spring training.
The Phillies have now added three relievers this offseason with Benoit, Pat Neshek, and David Rollins.
ESPN’s Pedro Gomez provides a previously unreported detail of the new collective bargaining agreement, agreed to by the owners and the players’ union last week. Players’ meal money for road games is being reduced from $105 to $30 per day. Teams are providing pre- and post-game meals in the visitors’ clubhouse to offset some of the decrease in meal money.
Gomez quotes an unnamed player who said, “I doubt many guys know about the money going down, nor would they have agreed to it.” All of the players Gomez contacted said they were unaware of and unhappy about the change.
Clubhouse attendants are certainly unhappy about this change, too. As Gomez notes, the attendants previously provided food for visiting teams which earned them tips from the players.
EDIT: It’s worth clarifying that chefs are required in clubhouses now as part of the new CBA, so it’s not a complete loss for the players.