Russell Martin upset with Laz Diaz

Born in Southwestern Ohio and currently residing on the Chesapeake Bay, Brien is a former editor-in-chief of IIATMS who now spends most of his time sitting on his deck watching his tomatoes ripen and consuming far more MLB Network programming than is safe for one's health or sanity.

22 thoughts on “Russell Martin upset with Laz Diaz

  1. williamjtasker

    Another case of an arrogant umpire who doesn't deserve the "privilege" of having his high paying job. It started in the first inning too with A-Rod being rung up on a checked swing where Diaz made the call without the aid of the first base umpire, something that should never happen. There were several times during the game that pointed out at Nova after Diaz failed to give Nova the low strike.

    • David

      See, I'm okay with the home plate ump making that call — but the 1B or 3B ump should also have the ability to be checked to overrule (like a "help" request) if requested.

      Recall that theoretically the home plate ump doesn't HAVE to grant the catcher's request for a ruling from the 1B/3B ump on a checked swing either and it becomes a little more farcical…

      • williamjtasker

        See, I disagree with that, David. The home plate umpire is focusing on the pitch and is the worst person to make that call. Help from the base umpire should always be accepted as a request from the catcher or the batter.

        • Matt

          The worst part of that call was that A-Rod definitely checked his swing and, had Diaz bothered to do his job and check with the other ump(s), the correct call would’ve been made. Instead the Angels get a free out and Diaz gets to show how much of a tough guy he is. Give me robot umps ASAP!

  2. BeanTooth

    You know who will get suspended or at least fined, don't you?

  3. William

    I don't like A-roid at all, but that was a non swing. The umps get most of the calls right but occassionly they make some real bad calls.

  4. getdownmoses

    Is it just me or has ire toward umpires noticeably increased over the last few years? I don't think I knew any umpires names a few years ago and now I could easily rattle off a half dozen names, mostly from reading about them in the press. Maybe it's my own fault but I know more about Joe West and Laz Diaz than any player on the Astros or Padres.

    • williamjtasker

      Part of it is a product of social media. Each play is broken down immediately and in a million bytes all around the Internet. But even in the days when the news was slower, ire with umpires is nothing new. It's always been around and will be.

  5. Jack Meeoffer

    This season I have seen Diaz , Bob Davidson Country Joe West humiliate players and managers. If Selig does not rein these umps in soon the fans will become restless these guys should be demoted and especially Angel Hernandez .

  6. RR-CHI

    Where is the accountability for umpires? I'd like to see MLB publish statistics on umpires for ball/strike, check swing, fair/foul, calls on the bases, etc. Why shouldn't we demand excellence from the umpires if we demand it from the players?

    Of course I realize this is never going to happen.

  7. zeke2517

    I understand how hard an umpire's job is nowadays, especially with a thousand high-def cameras catching every angle and giving us the chance to second guess every call, which in the past was simply impossible. But the arrogance drives me up the frickin' wall.

    Once in a while you'll get a Jim Joyce, but there are far too many Joe Wests proudly blowing calls and telling players and managers to take a hike when they take exception to the fact that this very, very well paid gentleman made a professional error that will ultimately affect the player or manager's career in some big or small way. Or you have this clown telling a catcher that he needs to earn the right to throw the ball to his pitcher. I'm sorry, did Mr. Martin not do that in Little League?

    And the ham-fisted argument against the public criticism of umpires, that questioning their authority will somehow embarrass the game, is in itself embarrassing. What could be worse for baseball than the idea that balls, strikes, and outs are officiated in an arbitrary or haphazard manner? If we are to accept that then Major League Baseball is worse than World Wrestling Entertainment. At least Vince McMahon offers a wink and a nod while Bud Selig comports himself like that guy in the cave with the Holy Grail at the end of Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade.

    Sadly, nothing will probably happen, and every few months we'll all get really pissed off say what we're saying right now and Bud Selig will collect a check for $18,000,000.

    • ProfRobert

      Your point about Jim Joyce — reportedly one of the best umpires in the game — is a great one. Having an umpire admit he got it wrong *raises* their stature and credibility. It's the arrogance of those who feign infallibility that brings umpires into disrepute.

  8. michael

    I had to read 3 iterations of this story to figure out that the ump merely wasn't letting Martin throw the fresh balls into play, to the pitcher after the previous ball left play. The ump's statement were so petty. I'm not sure what it will take to rid the absurd circumstances that worsen the game.

    • michael

      ump's remarks*

  9. Dan

    The thing that needed to happen here, if there was any expectation that Diaz should be disciplined, is for Girardi to take up the issue with the commissioner's office rather than Martin raise the issue to the press.

  10. Ryan

    I think the umpire was being petty, but did Martin really need to throw the ball back on foul balls to keep his arm loose? He got to throw the ball back on every pitch that wasn't hit.

    • BrienJackson

      Does it matter?

      • Hugh

        Is it possible that the situation is not exactly as reported? Calm down everybody.

        • Possible? I guess. Probable? Not so much.

      • ProfRobert

        Only if the bizarreness of Martin's explanation — it really makes a difference to throw new balls to the pitcher, when you throw the old ones all the time, and you also don't throw the ball after an in-play batted ball? — undercuts the credibility of his story. That said, I can't imagine Martin would make it up, and the most logical explanation is the Diaz was trying to provoke a confrontation.

        • So let’s stipulate instead that it’s a purely superstitious thing. Does that make a difference? I would think not, and that if a catcher requests to throw the ball back to his pitcher for whatever reason the umpire should always be expected to oblige.

          • Hugh

            It's certainly hard to envisage a satisfactory scenario where a catcher makes such a request and the umpire declines. But, though I like Martin, can we imagine for a moment that it's possible that it's not just the umpire's attitude, words and behaviour that might have been less than ideal.

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