We were hoping that no video existed of the incident involving Delmon Young throwing a bat at a minor league umpire Wednesday night. However, in this day and age, it is a little naive to think that something would not be caught on video. Alas, there is video of the incident at youtube.
A couple of our own personal observations:
1. The “tossing” of the bat is actually harder than we imagined it would be. When eye-witness accounts described it as an “underhanded toss” we pictured the bat moving very slowly with a bit of an arc, as if Young was just tossing the bat in the direction of the umpire. We even wondered aloud if maybe the bat hit the ground and bounced before hitting the umpire. None of that is true. The bat was indeed thrown with a good deal of force behind it. Young is very lucky that he did not hit the umpire in the head. Quite frankly, we can’t get ourselves to watch the clip more than once. It is to upsetting.
2. We are glad for Young’s sake and the organization’s sake that he is not actually seen in the video throwing the bat. Somehow we think that is better. Many have compared this incident to the Roberto Alomar incident in which he spit in the face of an umpire. Personally we think it is more like the Pete Rose incident when he maliciously shoved an umpire. However, in the Alomar incident, when the replays were shown, even years later, the tape always slows down so you can see the rage in Alomar’s face and the spit leave his mouth. While people will remember what Young did, without him in the video, it won’t leave such an indelible mark.
That being said, we believe the suspension will fall somewhere between 30 and 50 games. It needs to be more sever than the Pete Rose suspension (30 games) but less than the Ron Artest suspension (in terms of percentage of teams games).
Delmon Young throws bat at umpire after striking out [youtube.com]