Last night, the Tampa Bay Devil Rays’ top prospect, Delmon Young, threw his bat and hit the home plate umpire in the chest. Young, who plays for the AAA-level Durham Bulls, had just been ejected for arguing a called third strike. And just like that, the Future of the organization just took a big hit. At the very least, Young, who was named Baseball America’s 2005 minor league player of the year, will be suspended for a significant portion of this season, if not for the entire year. He will have to carry this stigma with him for the rest of his career. Every game he plays, an opposing announcer will mention that Delmon Young is a “hot-head” and will bring up the time that he threw bat at an umpire. In addition, umpires will not forget this incident and it will be a long time before another umpire gives Young a close call, even if this umpire was a scab. Delmon Young once complained publicly that he should already be in the majors and that the ownership of the Devil Rays was were holding him back so that it would be longer before he hits arbitration eligibility and free agency. Delmon Young voiced publicly that at 19 he was ready for the major leagues. Anyone that has ever seen Delmon Young play, says he is a 5-tool, can’t miss prospect. Well, apparently last night, he was missing the 6th tool, his brain, and it is going to cost him dearly.

There are no quotes from Young, however C Crash Davis stated, “Look at that! He hit the fucking umpire. Guy gets a free steak!”

Below is a link where you can listen to the audio feed from the radio broadcasts of both the Durham Bulls and the Pawtucket Red Sox. It is still difficult to tell exactly how severe the incident was. The Durham announcers suggest that Young just gave the bat a slight underhanded flick towards the umpire, while the Pawtucket crew indicate that it might have been more viscous.

Young hits ump with bat after ejection [milb.com]

[UPDATE] Here is another link. This one is an eyewitness report. First of all, earlier reports had the bat hitting the umpire in the chest. This witness says the bat hit the umpire in the legs. More importantly is how “viscous” the toss was. It was underhanded. It was not violent. But it was premeditated. Young was walking back to the dugout. After about five steps, he turned and tossed the bat at the umpire. He clearly thought about it and acted on it. He was not in the middle of a heated confrontation. It was clearly unprovoked.

Saw it with my own eyes [raystalk]

[UPDATE] Young has been suspended indefinately by the International League. In essence, the league has not had enough time to conduct a thorough investigation, and will make a final decision on the length of the suspension once the investigation has concluded.

Rays’ Young suspended indefinately [devilrays.com]

 
 

5 Comments

  1. Kevin Grygiel says:

    I was at the game with my family, I was just to the left of home plate about 15-rows up from the field.

    Young knew what he was doing, he was about 12 to 14 feet from home plate walking back to the dugout when he turn and threw the bat at the ump. The bat hit the ump on his side

    Before he left the box he was standing there after the call for what seemed like forever. He was then ejected and then came the incident. He “threw” the bat and when it hit the ump he stood there watching. Then the 1st base ref came in running and then at that point he decided to walk to the dug out.

    The ump was cool he did not say anything he walk about 10 feet up the third base line, took out a pad and wrote a note, then walked back and the next batter came to the plate.

  2. Colin says:

    I saw the clip on rome is burning and things looked pretty bad….hopefully the punishments will help him mature but not set him back too much (I think a month may be good)

  3. Freel says:

    Delmon is awesome on my Rays team for MLB baseball, on ps2. So i hope he bounces back soon on that reason alone.

  4. Sox fan John in Chicago says:

    Unbelievable. How can the Durham announcers say it was a mild toss, and a supposed eyewitness say it hit the ump in the leg. I just watched the clip 5x on MILB.com after reading the story of the 50 game suspension.

    This is far from a mild toss. I would say it took probably 70% of the strength Delmon has to toss the bat that hard underhand. Further, the meat end of the bat clearly hits the umpire in the midsection, causing the handle to pivot and, from my view, hit the umpire in the shoulder area or above.

    Incredibly, the commissioner of the minor league decides Mr. Young doesn’t need Anger Management treatment, and yet the same story says Delmon was suspended three games last year for bumping an ump, and tossed from a game for throwing a bat at a pitcher after getting hit by a pitch.

    This guy is moving ‘up’ the ladder in more ways than one. Last year, bump ump, throw bat at pitcher 60 or so feet away. This year, throw bat at umpire 12-14 feet away (per eyewitness cited here).

    If he gets to the majors, we may see a bat to the scull attack like the one on Johnny Roseboro by Juan Marichal. April incident this year would have been classified an assault at the least, had it happened off the field.

    If this hothead does ‘strike’ again, the commissioner who didn’t require anger management ought to be named in any injury suit.

  5. Ja Majerus says:

    I think he was involved in a crazy shooting incident

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