Tag: Miller Park

Brewers Look For New Manager: Pat Listach, Bob Melvin To Be Interviewed

It will be a great homecoming for Pat Listach on Tuesday.

The former Brewer and Astro was informed late last week that Doug Melvin asked the Washington Nationals for an interview for the managerial position, according to MLB.com and the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

Listach was currently beginning a managerial assignment for a Puerto Rican winter ball league, but had to change plans quickly to head back to Wisconsin. He will be meeting with Doug Melvin on Tuesday for an interview.

The situation is not new for Listach, who spent the last two years as the Washington Nationals’ third-base coach. He was passed over the Cubs’ skipper Lou Piniella after the 2007 season, but gained more notice for his work in the Chicago farm system.

If he were to become the 16th skipper of the Brew Crew, it would be his first Major League managerial assignment.

He is reportedly also on Toronto’s short list, although there is no word about whether or not he has been contacted by the Blue Jays’ front office.

Pat Listach played five seasons in Milwaukee, making his debut in 1992. He won the AL rookie of the year in ’92, and also finished 18th in MVP voting for the season. He finished his career playing for Houston in 1997.

Doug Melvin is also looking at other candidate to replace Ken Macha in Milwaukee. Bob Melvin, formerly of the Seattle Mariners and Arizona Diamondbacks, is set to meet with the team on Thursday.

Melvin has plenty of managerial experience, with a lifetime record of .493 with his major league clubs. In 2007 he garnered Manager of the Year honors, with the D-Backs winning the NL West. They cruised past the Cubs in three games before getting swept in the NLCS by the Colorado Rockies.

The playoff experience is certainly going to give him an edge going into the interviews. If the Brewers want Melvin, they may have to move quickly, as the Chicago Cubs are also rumored to be interested in having him head up their squad in 2011.

According to espnchicago.com, Melvin also asked for permission to contact Joey Cora, a current member of the Chicago White Sox coaching staff.

Cora was passed over in 2009 for the Seattle Mariners job, and is a close friend of Milwaukee hitting coach and former interim manager Dale Sveum.

All three seem like good candidates for the job, but smart money is on Melvin getting the job. With the young roster and large amount of work needed to bring this team in contention in the NL Central, experience is going to be key.

Listach would still be a good choice, considering his track record for working with young talent in the Minors, and his history with the team.

Cora seems to be the wild card in this situation, but Doug Melvin has a habit of thinking hard about these kinds of decisions, so rest assured he believes that Cora could handle the position.

It will most likely be a few weeks until the story develops further, but the wheels are in motion. Whether or not a new manager will equal success on the scoreboard is going to take even more time.

Read more MLB news on BleacherReport.com

Bob Davidson Must Be Fired For Disregard To Rules On Ejections

Baseball must fire Bob Davidson. It has no choice. Not after Tuesday night’s NL Central clash between the St. Louis Cardinals and Milwaukee Brewers in Milwaukee’s Miller Park.

Davidson, in the middle of a game where he and his crew ejected a manager, a coach, and a player, decided to complete the superfecta by ejecting a fan.

There was only one problem: the fan never interfered with the playing field. Nowhere in the Major League Baseball rulebook does an umpire have the power to eject a fan who never enters the playing field.

According to the official MLB Rule Book under rule 9.02(e), “each umpire has authority at his discretion to eject from the playing field any spectator or other person not authorized to be on the playing field.”
Rule 1.04 specifies that the playing field is, as would be assumed, just the field of play, the 400 or so feet to center field, the foul territory, and everything else in between.

Nowhere in the MLB rule book is an umpire given the authority to eject a fan from the stands, unless, of course, he enters the field of play.

So when Davidson stopped the game in the seventh inning and turned to the stands to eject Sean Ottow, 44, of Waukesha, Wis., Davidson was showing a blatant disregard to the rules of Major League Baseball.

Or, even worse, Davidson displayed a lack of knowledge of the rulebook.

In either instance, his display should be intolerable.

Davidson already has a long history of controversial calls including a fair-foul call that cost the Florida Marlins a walk-off victory against the Philadelphia Phillies in August, but he had never shown a blatant disregard for the rules.

Up until now, his errors were no different than those of other high-ranking umpires like Jim Joyce and Don Denkinger.

Sure, in the 2006 World Baseball Classic, Davidson ignored the rule that states that an umpire cannot overturn another umpire’s call without being asked by that umpire for input, but in fairness to him the baseball rule book also stated that Davidson, not the second base umpire, had precedence to decide if a runner tagging up from third had left the bag after the catch. Davidson was only ignoring an invalid ruling by that umpire.

But over their careers, Joyce and Denkinger never went this far. Never did they eject a fan from the stands for jeering a player.

After Davidson issued the order ejecting Ottow from the stadium, he signaled for an usher to escort Ottow out of his seat. The usher guided Ottow up and out from the stands behind home plates. While leaving, Ottow made a v-shape with his arms and the rest of the Brewers fans cheered him.
Ottow was booked and charged with disorderly conduct.

Ottow told the Associated Press that he had been jeering Cardinals’ catcher Yadier Molina for some time, but insisted that he never swore. If he swore, then certainly he could have been thrown out of the game and booked for disorderly conduct.

But in no situation could he have been thrown out of the game by Davidson. Not if Davidson chose to follow the rule book.

Now, there are situations where umpires are given discretion to determine what is fair regarding fan behavior.

If a fan reaches over into the field of play and interferes with a live ball, the crew chief has the right to eject the fan. While the rule book technically only gives him the authority to eject the spectator from the playing field itself, security understands that in essence the fan has been ejected from the game and he or she will be escorted out of the stadium.

Just the same, if a spectator (hereafter referred to as an idiot to save space) jumps onto the field of play just because he wants to take some girl to the prom, the umpire has the right to ask a police officer to run the idiot down and taze him and make sure he never attends another baseball game the rest of his life.

Idiocy on the playing field can be ejected.

But nowhere in the MLB rulebook is an umpire given the authority to eject a fan from the stadium, and especially not to signal an usher to escort him out.


Yet on a power trip as revolting as when Joey Crawford ejected Tim Duncan for laughing, Davidson decided to rewrite 140 years of precedent and eject a fan from the game.

And there is only one right course of action MLB can possibly take: it must immediately relieve Bob Davidson of his duties. Anything less can only be interpreted as a statement that umpires don’t have to follow the rules.

In my life, I never thought I would see an ejection more nonsensical than the one my lacrosse coach received during my senior year of high school. In the fourth quarter, the umpire ejected the coach for shouting at his team for a line change. Nobody thought the referee could be serious.

But somehow, Davidson was able to top that.

If baseball wants to keep whatever semblance of credibility it has left after years of Bud Selig tweaking the rule book at his whim, it must fire Bob Davidson immediately. It must show that it will not tolerate umpires blatantly ignoring the rule book at the expense of the fans who allow MLB to be as profitable as it is. If Davidson is allowed into Miller Park tonight for the final game of the three-game series between the Cardinals and Brewers, it will be a slap in the face to every single fan of baseball.

Will he be there? Of course. I’m not stupid. Davidson has about as much chance of being fired or even suspended as I do of becoming the next manager of the New York Yankees.

But it doesn’t change the fact that he needs to be dismissed. He must be dismissed.

Anything less and baseball might as well throw out the rule book and start over.

Read more MLB news on BleacherReport.com

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