Friday, May 28, 2010

A tutorial on arguing with umpires

By Eduardo Perez

The best umpire is the umpire you didn't notice.

I'll always remember teammates and coaches saying that. Unfortunately, this was a noticeable week for a few men in blue. Bob Davidson's heated exchange with Carl Crawford and Joe Maddon made headlines on Tuesday, and Joe West followed up his second-inning ejection of Ozzie Guillen on Wednesday by tossing pitcher Mark Buehrle -- the aftermath of which generated even more bleeps for Guillen's highlight reel of tirades and now has launched an investigation from the league office. Having experienced roles as both a player and manager, I can say that there is definitely an art to arguing with umpires.
Joe Maddon
AP Photo/Mike CarlsonJoe Maddon and umpire Bob Davidson's disagreement was just one in a week full of them between umps, players and managers.

A manager has to be able to insult an umpire's decision-making ability without personally offending him. Sometimes you know that the umpire made the right call, yet your player doesn't seem to think so. In situations like that, you almost always still back your guy up because you don't want to lose his trust. Managers really have to weigh the consequences of their actions and try to strategically manipulate the results to fire up their team.

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