UPDATE: Peace has apparently been achieved.
6:35 AM: From the Twitter feed of Brandon Phillips after last night’s marathon game against the Pirates:
No names attached, but as John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer noted early this morning, there was some jawing in the game between Phillips and Pirates pitcher Jared Hughes after Hughes hit Phillips with a pitch in the eighth inning, with Hughes shouting something at Phillips. The shouting happened, Hughes, said, because after he was hit, Phillips tossed the ball back at him, which he told reporters he did not expect.
Serious business if what Phillips says is true. I’m sure there will be some MLB investigation about all of this.
Oh, and Phillips is a guest on SportsTalk tonight on the NBC Sports Network at 6PM Eastern. I presume the conversation will be a bit more interesting than the usual “we gotta play ’em one game at a time” rebop.
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)