Chris Davis joins the 50-homer club

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Orioles first baseman Chris Davis became the first Major Leaguer to hit 50 home runs in a single season since Jose Bautista hit 54 in 2010. With the game tied 3-3 in the top of the eighth, Davis drove a Steve Delabar 2-2 change-up to left-center for his milestone home run, putting the Orioles ahead 4-3.

Davis moves into a tie with Brady Anderson for the Orioles single-season team record. Davis will have 15 more games to become the sole leader.

The list of players to hit 50-plus since 2005:

Player Year HR Age Tm Lg
Jose Bautista 2010 54 29 TOR AL
Prince Fielder 2007 50 23 MIL NL
Alex Rodriguez 2007 54 31 NYY AL
Ryan Howard 2006 58 26 PHI NL
David Ortiz 2006 54 30 BOS AL
Andruw Jones 2005 51 28 ATL NL
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 9/13/2013.

MLB calls umpire union statement about Manny Machado discipline “inappropriate”

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Earlier today the Major League Baseball Umpire’s Association made multiple posts on social media registering its displeasure at what it feels was the league’s weak discipline of Manny Machado following his run-in with umpire Bill Welke. It was an unusual statement, as it’s not common for umpires, individual or via their union to comment on such matters.

This evening, in an official statement, the league called it inappropriate:

“Manny Machado was suspended by MLB Chief Baseball Officer Joe Torre, who considered all the facts and circumstances of Machado’s conduct, including precedent, in determining the appropriate level of discipline.  Mr. Machado is appealing his suspension and we do not believe it is appropriate for the union representing Major League Umpires to comment on the discipline of players represented by the Players Association, just as it would not be appropriate for the Players Association to comment on disciplinary decisions made with respect to umpires.  We also believe it is inappropriate to compare this incident to the extraordinarily serious issue of workplace violence.”

That final bit, about workplace violence, is something that I didn’t really consider when I read the umps’ statements, but it’s a damn good point. In an age where people are literally shooting up workplaces, umpires making reference to that kind of thing in response to a player throwing a bat is pretty rich indeed. And in pretty poor taste.