High school baseball umpires have a lot of options in handling disputes. They can give teams warnings, ask the audience to control themselves ... or just throw everyone out of the game.
No, not the players. The players were cool. The whole audience was ejected. It's the kind of unprecedented tomfoolery that can happen only in West Burlington, Iowa.
Up 11-3, Winfield-Mount Union's manager Scott McCarty was fuming over a fair-foul call in the fifth inning. One thing led to another, people said words they weren't proud of, and umpire Don Briggs decided to toss the entire cranky crowd of about 100. When people wouldn't leave, he called the police to assist in the dispersal of the whinin' Iowans.
"I know it sounds like I'm the bad guy - but it was the crowd," Briggs said. "If I got the control to ask one person to leave, I feel like I can ask them all to leave."
Remember, Winfield-Mount Union was up 11-3 at this point.
After a long delay, the superintendent made a housecall to the ballpark and convinced the umpire to ease up, man, it's just a baseball game. After the delay, West Burlington made a fantastic two-inning rally, scoring nine runs to win 12-11.
So let this be your lesson, Scott McCarty. When you have a comfortable lead, don't change the complexion of the game by arguing a call with an eight-run lead, cause a community stir that brings the freakin' superintendent to the premises, then have your team watch the instructional video Poppin' Flies With Luis Castillo.
High school umpire tells entire crowd: You're out! [Des Moines Register]