Mark Prior’s latest comeback attempt involved working as a reliever at Triple-A for the Reds, but he’s been on the disabled list with a shoulder injury since late April and today they released him.
Since moving to the bullpen full time last season Prior has 47 strikeouts in 35 innings at Triple-A, but that also comes with 7.0 walks per nine innings and a 4.15 ERA.
Prior is still just 32 years old, but he hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2006. To put that in some context, Prior’s teammates that season included Greg Maddux, Tony Womack, John Mabry, and Phil Nevin. Oh, and Carlos Marmol was a 23-year-old rookie starting pitcher.
The good news is that everyone who wrote a “Mark Prior is making a comeback” story this spring can just copy and paste it for next year, assuming he doesn’t call it a career.
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)