Posted by: Jeremy | October 21, 2009

Tim McClelland, fitting right in amongst MLB umpires

Too much drama in Tim McClelland's life

Too much drama in Tim McClelland's life

What would the MLB Playoffs be without a host of blown calls by the league’s esteemed group of umpires? Following the running theme of this year’s edition, “Crew Chief” Tim McClelland made a couple of the worst calls you’ll see this season in last night’s Yankees-Angels game — a pair that, luckily for him, didn’t have quite impact that Phil Cuzzi’s boner in Game 2 of the ALDS did. Nevertheless, another disappointing display from the men in blue (or black — I’m still trying to figure that one out).

McClelland had the tough task of umpiring third base last night — a position only rivaled in difficulty by the left and right field slots, which are usually reserved for masterminds like Cuzzi. The first botched call came when the Angels appealed Nick Swisher had left the bag too early when tagging and scoring on a fly ball to center. McClelland ruled Swisher out, though replays showed he wasn’t even watching the play and that Swisher was indeed still on the base when the catch was made. I’ll let the video below show McClelland’s other masterpiece call, which came in the fifth with the Yankees leading 5-0:

McClelland — the great man that he is — came to the media room afterward to explain his gaffes. Of the first call, he claimed “in his heart” he believed Swisher left the bag too soon and that he was “not sure I believe the replay” — the very replay that showed him not even looking. No, I’m not sure I believe it either. As for the rundown call, McClelland said he thought Robinson Cano was touching third base when he was tagged, implying he wasn’t paying attention there either. Make sense to me.

Anyway, enough of this “human element”. I say let’s bring in the machines and get this right…



  1. who is paying this guy off??
    they should bring in instant replays, tennis style

  2. it seems that the umpires are like Figgins and Aybar in game one.
    “You got it.”
    “I got it? You got it?”
    “No, I got it…….or you got it”
    “…, the ground got it!”

    as for fixing the game. Microchips embedded in the ball, bases, shoes, and gloves of the fielding side. Umpire decodes ball to put in play. then if hit grounded to third, when thrown to first, a chip in First baseman’s shoe triggers the chip in the base.(kind of like taking the safety off a gun)
    then when the ball is caught, the chip in the ball makes a connection to the players glove that is also chipped. then the ball/glove triggers the shoe/base.
    the runners chip in the shoe turns a different re-action to the base, as long as they beat the ball at first. if a ball goes foul, then the umpire triggers new ball into play, and deletes the foul ball.

  3. I heard this somewhere and I think it makes sense:

    Have an extra umpire upstairs, and any challenged play goes up to him, like the goal judge in hockey. This way, we keep the so-called “human element” and create a new job…

  4. i agree jer, robotic micro chips sounds a little far fetched… have the umps call as they see it but be able to challenge a call if need be

  5. Yeah, “bill” seems to be in a bit over his head. You should right a book about that, man!

  6. […] never been hesitant to mention how much I think MLB umpires suck, but even I have to feel for Jim Joyce on this one: Last night Joyce blatantly cost Detroit’s […]

  7. […] and allowing Texas to tack on three more runs. Nice to see the league dealt with last year’s fiasco by supplying us with the best crew of umpires it can possibly run […]

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