By Eduardo A. Encina
The Baltimore Sun
8:41 PM AKDT, August 17, 2012
DETROIT -- Orioles first baseman Mark Reynolds lambasted the umpires following the Orioles’ 5-3 loss to the Tigers on Friday night, frustrated when home-plate umpire Tim Timmons overruled first-base ump Jeff Kellogg’s fifth-inning out call on Jhonny Peralta.
Third baseman Manny Machado made a nice play back-handing Peralta’s ball down the third-base line and made a strong throw across the infield to Reynolds. The throw was wide, but Reynolds, who has played very well at first this season, lunged to catch the ball, his right foot toeing the bag.
Kellogg called Peralta out, but once Peralta, Tigers manager Jim Leyland and first-base coach Tom Brookens all contested the call, Kellogg – the crew chief – asked Timmons for help.
After discussing it, the umps changed the call. Reynolds blew his top, slamming his glove on the ground, which prompted second-base up Vic Carapazza, who wasn’t involved in the discussion to change the call, to eject Reynolds. Orioles manager Buck Showalter was soon ejected by third-base ump Marty Foster after a heated verbal exchange, and Machado was charged with a throwing error.
After the game, Reynolds spoke his mind about the umpiring. Changing the call was one thing, he said, but the fact that Timmons missed a call earlier in the game – he called Nick Markakis out at the plate in the first inning even though replays showed that Markakis slid under catcher Alex Avila’s tag – compounded it.
Reynolds will likely face a hefty fine for what he said following the game. And he probably won’t get much help from umpires for the rest of the season. But he might have endeared himself to the Orioles Nation for standing up for his team. Regardless, his postgame interview was one of the most captivating this season – full of honesty and raw emotion.
So here is Mark Reynolds unplugged, a full transcript of what Reynolds said after the game:
What was your reaction to the reversed call?
First of all, Manny made a hell of a play. Tough throw and I stayed on the bag and that’s why I got so upset. I don’t understand how an umpire can miss a play at home plate that’s right in front of him and see that play from home plate at first base. It’s embarrassing that they would overturn a call that obviously has an impact on the game in the middle of the pennant race. Obviously by the way I acted, it’s very frustrating. I’ve never seen it in my life an umpire reverse a call after the right call is made. And it’s obviously on the replay I kept my foot on the bag. I was pretty mad.
Were you surprised when it was reversed?
Definitely. I’ve never in my life seen someone reverse a call. The guy in Colorado [Rockiesfirst baseman Todd Helton got an out call earlier this year despite being far off the bag] the guy was off the bag by three feet. And my foot was on the bag and they reversed it. And it’s a shame they don’t have accountability. They don’t have any, if they make a bad call, it’s like, ‘Ho-hum, next day is coming.’ If we have a bad couple of games we get benched or we get sent down. They have nobody breathing down their throats. They have nobody, they are just secure in their jobs. And they are probably over there right now laughing about it because they don’t worry about it. This game is way too important right now, where we are in the season, for these kind of calls to happen. And it’s very frustrating.
Did you think you’d get ejected after throwing your glove?
That’s terrible. [Second-base umpire] Vic [Carapazza] has no authority to throw me out right there. All I did was an equipment violation. It’s a fine. You are supposed to point at it and the league offices decide what to do there. He just threw me out right there. I didn’t do anything wrong. If I go up to him and say something to him, that I shouldn’t say, that’s fine. Throw me out there for that. But you can’t throw me out for throwing my glove. What’s the difference between a guy throwing his helmet after a bad call? It’s just part of it and everybody goes on their way. He had no right to throw me out there. There’s just so many words I can’t say on this camera right now that I want to say.
How tough was it having those calls go against you?
It’s almost like ‘Screw the Orioles’ by the umpires. I mean [Adam Jones] was obviously safe at first base the other day, cost us a run against Boston. There’s got to be some kind of replay for this. It’s to the point where all these calls that get missed and it costs people runs, costs people outs. It cost [starter Tommy Hunter] extra pitches. I can’t say how I really feel but it’s pretty obvious.