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Sports News Without Fear, Favor or Compromise

Mike Scioscia Called "Bush League" For Trying To Freeze Opposing Pitcher

Illustration for article titled Mike Scioscia Called Bush League For Trying To Freeze Opposing Pitcher

White Sox closer David Robertson accused Angels manager Mike Scioscia of intentionally blocking the plate during an argument with umpires so Robertson couldn’t stay warm, a charge Scioscia denied.

Robertson came on in the ninth with the White Sox up a run. The first batter, Erick Aybar, struck out on a dropped third strike. Catcher Tyler Flowers tried to tag Aybar, who was ruled out, but Aybar ran to first anyway. The umpires went to the review, which confirmed the original ruling, and Scioscia came out to protest to home plate ump Fieldin Culbreth. The entire process took more than six minutes, and when play resumed, Robertson eventually blew the save. (The White Sox would win in 13.)


So, two things here. I’m not sure this play even should have been reviewable: even if Flowers didn’t tag Aybar (and the replay shows he may not have), Culbreth signaled an out. If he hadn’t, Flowers would have thrown to first to get Aybar—the call on the field dictated the play, and that can’t be undone. Second, MLB’s replay rules clearly state that managers can’t argue plays that have been reviewed. Even if Culbreth was merely giving Scioscia an explanation, it should have been short and sweet and shouldn’t have taken place between the mound and the plate.

“I felt that Scioscia was very bush league,” Robertson said, “coming out there and standing in front of home plate after the play had already been reviewed. I felt like once it has been reviewed, it has been reviewed on film and he’s called out, there’s no reason for you to come back out and argue the call.

“I guess that’s just the way he is. It kind of changed the whole momentum in the ninth.”

Scioscia denied Robertson’s charge, saying “Absolutely that was not my intent.”

The inning provided something of a flashback to Game 2 of the 2005 ALCS, when A.J. Pierzynski made it to first on a dropped third strike, eventually giving the White Sox the win over Anaheim, and Chicago did not lose again that postseason.

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