Jeurys Familia could be the Mets’ new closer

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Jeurys Familia pitched an unheralded 1 2/3 innings of effective relief for the Mets as they came from behind to beat the Phillies 5-4 on Sunday afternoon, avoiding a sweep. Familia, 24, has quietly been one of the Mets’ most reliable relievers this season and big things may be in store for him.

Via ESPN’s Adam Rubin, manager Terry Collins says Familia is moving closer to becoming the team’s closer. Familia lowered his ERA to 3.12 with Sunday’s effort and now has 14 strikeouts and six unintentional walks in 17 1/3 innings on the season.

Since losing Bobby Parnell to Tommy John surgery, the Mets have used a hodgepodge of relievers to close out games. Four different relievers — Kyle Farnsworth (2), Jose Valverde (2), Carlos Torres (1), and Daisuke Matsuzaka (1) — have recorded saves for the club. They would love to have some stability at the back end of their bullpen.

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.