I’m starting off this week’s Around the Horn with the official protest staged by Umpire’s this week over what most people view as the truth versus the ump’s view of what they called an “escalating pattern of verbal attacks by players and the lack of punishment for Kinsler after he suggested veteran umpire Angel Hernandez should find a new job.” Is there a thinner-skinned “official” anywhere in the world than a Major League Umpire? Seriously, there’s thicker skin on the rotting corpse of Abe Vigoda than an umpire. It gets better, this “protest” that looked more like episode of “What Not to Wear” violated the collective bargaining agreement, and MLB commissioner, Rob Manfred, said this, “I want to be clear that that protest was a violation of their collective bargaining agreement. We let them know that it was a violation of their collective bargaining agreement and that we intended to enforce our rights under that agreement.” This may or may not have been diffused when Manfred agreed to meet with umps to listen to them whine like a 3-year old that doesn’t get ice cream at the zoo (that really does happen, its my life).
This ridiculous behavior has been going on for decades now, who can forget that up until last year we didn’t have controversial calls replayed at MLB games on Jumbotrons because umps didn’t want to hear the boos when they screwed up a call.
Even crazier than the umps poorly staged protest was Sunday’s comeback win for the Cubs aided by the newest offensive weapon in baseball, the dropped third strike. Actually, President, Donald Trump, not using the term “fake news” during his Military address in Afghanistan may have been crazier.
In case you forgot, Miguel Gonzalez is available, four earned runs over his last four starts and a 2.93 ERA since returning from the DL. Anyone? Anyone?
Speaking of the White Sox, has Don Cooper done it again? James Shields has been quietly pitching well. It’s quiet because no one cares, but he could be a valuable fifth starter if he could be turned into a quality arm again (nerd alert).
Does anyone else think its crazy Alex Avila has changed the pronunciation of his name? Kind of weird, right? Then I thought about it more and he’s probably trying to not be associated with his dad, Al Avila, the inept GM of the Tigers. His dad has cut him and traded while in charge, I’d change my name, too. I bet holiday dinners are awkward.