“There’s no score in the game, they clearly struck out Scott on a checked swing that appeared to be in the dirt, but when [batter Luke] Scott started to trot to first, [catcher Jamie] Burke had already flipped the ball to the home plate umpire, and was on the way to the dugout and they couldn’t retrieve the ball and the umpire was hanging on to it. I think once the umpire gets involved in the play, by catching the ball, the inning is over. If the umpire blew the call, then the inning is over, folks.”

–KEBC radio announcer Jim Byers, during the Oklahoma-Round Rock game on May 3rd, when umpires blew a dropped strike call (KEBC)

“This is way too long a discussion.”

–Byers, during the resulting discussion of the umps

“Oh, no. I think they’re bringing…this is a joke, this is an utter and complete joke. I think they are gonna bring the Red Hawks back out onto the field.”


“You know, incompetence should not be a reason to keep the inning going.”


“[Manager] Ireland’s thrown out of the game, and this is ridiculous, this is an absolute joke, and I hope the league is listening.”


“Ireland with his first ejection of the year, gets in the face of the other worthless ump, now he’s gonna go get in the face of this other clown, and he kicks dirt on the home plate umpire.”


“That is so incompetent that it doesn’t even, it’s not even worth me having a stroke over.”


“Now Ireland’s going to do his trademark covering the plate and the one joke of an ump’s gonna get his big, fat belly in there to keep Ireland from doing it.”


“Ireland is still standing there with the three clowns.”


“Incompetence is all it is.”


“These umpires are such fools that they can’t even get him off the field and end the argument.”


“Unprofessional, unbefitting any level of pro ball. Oh, and you know what? A run scores, too. Garcia rounded the plate and scored, so they’re not gonna put him back. Oh, this is the biggest joke of all. During the ten-minute discussion, Jesse Garcia, who was the runner at second, I saw him walk around and touch home plate, they’re gonna actually call that a run.”


“So the biggest travesty of all time, in my time calling baseball, is that it’s now a 1-0 game.”


“And what next could happen? A lightning bolt could hit the field, I guess.”


“There was a situation like this, it was described to me, in a game in New Orleans, a similar situation with amateur, over-their-head umpires, and they had a lengthy discussion and this happened. Teams need to just start walking off the field and quit playing until they get qualified umpires out there.”


“It was a big enough joke, a big enough travesty, something you might not see even at the Little League level, to allow Scott to be at first after Burke flipped the ball to the umpire and he’s holding it in his hand, and then a ten minute discussion later, and he was discussing it with the first base umpire, and they were just going to let it go, but finally that little third base umpire got into the act, and they decided, “Nope, let’s make the game 1-0, let’s make a joke out of the game and let Garcia score from second and put Scott at first base.”


“Other than that, things are going real well here.”


“All in all, this has been fun. Fun in a joke, amateurish sort of way, but still fun. In quotes.”


“We’ve got lights here. This might turn into a night game.”


“Let’s just play the stupid game.”


“We’re in the bottom of the sixth, and it’s either no score or 1-0 Round Rock, depending on what these clowns decide to do next.”


“Whatever (the decision) is, it’s gonna be wrong, so let’s just do it and move on.”


“Now, in two or three minutes, it could be 6-0 Round Rock. They could decide to count every run in the whole series.”



“I don’t think it’s legitimate.”

–Phillies pitcher Cory Lidle, on Barry Bonds’ home run total (Philadelphia Daily News)

“What he could have done without performance-enhancing drugs–which he hasn’t been proven guilty of [using], which I’m not buying–you can maybe take what he had done in his prime, before his head started growing at an enormous rate, and just make those projections. Say that, ‘This is what he could have done.’ Maybe it’s 550 home runs. I don’t know. It definitely wouldn’t have been anything close to 700.”

–Lidle, on Bonds

“I’ve never met him. I don’t know him. I know what I’ve heard. I’ve heard a lot of things where he doesn’t treat people very well. That doesn’t sit well with me.”

–Lidle, on Bonds

“Anyone who can sit in front of Congress and not be able to answer questions–there’s something wrong with that.”

–Lidle, on Mark McGwire and his Congressional testimony

“The reason I’m not scared to speak out is–I don’t think he’s a dumb person–basically, he had decisions to make. Whether he wanted to treat people good or treat people bad. Whether he wanted to pump drugs into his body or stay clean. I believe he chose the [former].”

–Lidle, on Bonds

“I don’t want to see him break records. If he breaks them, it will be a shame, because I think when all is said and done, the truth will come out. It hasn’t yet, but I think if he was in front of a jury, and there had to be a verdict, I think the verdict might be–with everything that I heard was in that book–I think the verdict might be guilty.”


“It’s sad. I’m not a player-hater. I like to see players get paid as much as they can. But without friggin’ cheating.”


“The worst part of it all, the young guys–the guys in the minor leagues, and worse than that, high school, and college–they already know they don’t have a chance. If someone can’t hit 15 home runs in college, how do they expect to take somebody’s job in the big leagues who’s hitting 50 home runs? They start feeling this pressure of doing that stuff, and it really is a problem.”


“It’s selfish for those guys who did it… to know what the chain reaction was to keep doing it.”



“When I was with the Phillies, [manager] Danny Ozark would take the big-swinging guys like [Mike] Schmidt and [Greg] Luzinski out of the lineup. Let some subs get the 0-fers.”

–Yankee third base coach Larry Bowa, on how he handled the lineup when a knuckleballer was the opposing pitcher (Boston Globe)

“I feel horrible about what happened to Josh. I know how much effort Josh put into the job while he was here. I can’t think that way. I don’t want to be the reason John Flaherty retired.”

–Red Sox knuckleballer Tim Wakefield, on the trade of Josh Bard to San Diego and the retirement of John Flaherty in Spring Training

“That was the first time naked.”

–recently reacquired Red Sox catcher Doug Mirabelli, when asked if he had ever ridden in a police car before, after changing into his uniform on the ride to the ballpark


“It’s tainted.”

–former Commissioner Fay Vincent, on Bonds chasing Ruth and Aaron (Albany Times-Union)

“We found out the truth about Pete Rose. It’s going to be much more difficult (with steroids). The Pete Rose case was tiny, a minuscule issue compared to this one. The difficulty that Mitchell has is about 100 times greater than the challenge we had with Pete Rose. We had one guy, one issue.”

–Vincent, comparing the steroid issue to the Pete Rose problem

“If you watched the hearings, it was hard to tell who came out worse: whether it was baseball, which did very badly, or the Congress, which I think did even worse.”

–Vincent, on the steroid hearings last year

“The public will know, when Mitchell is finished, I assume, what the story was, how many people cheated, how many pitchers, how many hitters, what Bonds was doing.”

–Vincent, on the investigation headed by George Mitchell


“I guess he caught Jason at the wrong moment, which is not hard to do.”

–A’s third baseman Eric Chavez, on the John Lackey/Jason Kendall confrontation which resulted in a brawl (San Francisco Chronicle)

“Jason has a history of leaning out over the plate and trying to get hit. He stuck his elbow guard out over the plate and I told him not to stick it out over the plate. He had a problem with that, and he came and got me. He has a right to do that. I’m totally cool with that. … The guy’s been hit 200-something times. There’s a reason for that.”

–Angels pitcher John Lackey, on how he thought Kendall was trying to get by a pitch with the bases loaded

“Until I die.”

–Lackey, on how long he’ll appeal any suspension from the incident

“He’d been disgruntled since the sixth inning, so it was time for him to go.”

–umpire Dale Scott, on ejecting Angels’ manager Mike Scoscia from the game in the ninth inning


“We’re all trying to get on the same page … Well, I guess we’ve been
on the same page. We’ve all been sucking. We want to get on a
different page.”

–Royals outfielder Emil Brown, on the team’s struggles (Kansas City Star)

“Looks like Jesus
Acts like Judas
Throws like Mary.”

–A sign in Fenway park when the Yankees recently visited, referring to Johnny Damon (ESPN)

“We were hoping that we would get him. I think any team in the major leagues would have been, obviously, a lot better with him on the staff. I’m not quite sure why we didn’t get him. We usually get everybody.”

–Yankees outfielder Bernie Williams, on Red Sox starter Josh Beckett (Boston Globe)

“Hell, yeah, he left for the money, and so what? But people don’t know what happened behind the scenes and why they didn’t sign him. That was just ugly.”

–White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen, on Jim Thome getting booed in Cleveland last week

“It’s hard to find someone who’s off work, who doesn’t have to work during the day. If we played night games, maybe they could come over after work.”

–Cubs manager Dusty Baker, after explaining how the Cubs are struggling in part because they don’t have a left-handed batting practice pitcher

“Ground balls, that’s what you want. You cannot point them in the direction you want to go.”

–Yankee pitcher and DIPS aficionado Mariano Rivera (New York Times)

“Get your World Series tickets now.”

–Tigers’ closer Todd Jones, with tongue-in-cheek, on the early success of the team

“We’re the greatest team of all time. We’re not going to lose another game.”


“My finger does not hurt. I can [stink] without having an issue.”

–Mets closer Billy Wagner, on his alleged finger injury (New York Post)

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