When a questionable pitch was called a strike against Yunel Escobar late in the game he had a word or two for home plate umpire Tim Welke. And that’s when things got interesting.

As Escobar was complaining, one of the field mics caught somebody saying “you’re hitting a buck-77, just shut up and swing the bat.” The Sun Sports camera feed was in a replay, so many assumed it was Welke that said it (see the 0:15 mark of first video below).

But things become clearer if you watch the Blue Jays feed. While the comment is less obvious, it is clear that Welke is not saying anything when the comment is made (see 0:15 mark of second video below)…




  1. Ken says:

    Good advice.

  2. Greg says:

    This is just the mic picking up a fan, right? Might be interesting if it was a Blue Jays bench coach.

  3. Nick says:

    It was the guy sitting in the second row (blue shirt, blue-ish hat) behind the guy with the gray shirt. He was yelling stuff all night.

    • MJ says:

      Yea someone needed to tell that guy to shut up. This was probably the only reasonable comment he made the whole game.

  4. Gus says:

    I was yelling the same thing at my TV last night. Of course given his lack of command of the English language, I doubt he understood anything anyway.

    His "chrome" doesn't sit well when he is blowing games. Nice to see him get some elevation on his HR last night; he rolls it over to the SS way too often.

    His 2013 looks suspicously like Elliot Johnson's pre-benching 2012.

  5. Dave L says:

    Seeing as Yunel has an interpreter to do interviews, his english comprehension is minimal. "a buck 87" isn't something he could grasp.

    • Bill says:

      I actually yelled out the he is lucky the ump doesn't speak Spanish. But I doubt I was heard from 112.

  6. Mr. Smith 1980 says:

    Kind of a valid point made by the heckler, but... this is generally what happens when a hitter is frustrated about struggling at the plate- it becomes the catalyst for mouthing-off on every bad pitch (see: Upton, BJ 2007-present).

    • Bill says:

      Exactly. But to be even more precise, it is what happens when a mediocre hitter is not being mediocre anymore. True pros look inside themselves instead of acting out externally. And rather quickly they turn it around. Hopefully YunEs gets back to hitting like his numbers suggest he can. But when I see tongue flapping going on, vis a vis BJ, it does not inspire confidence. It only shows me that they aren't looking at their struggles internally, ad thus the struggles are likely to continue.

      • Mr. Smith 1980 says:

        There are several outside factors that can/should be considered:

        1. Just like a child with a parent, he is acting in a way that he has seen modeled by veterans and the manager.

        2. This is where a hitting coach with some semblance of talent can make a difference. A hitting coach can't necessarily make a marginal hitter an all-star, but they should be able to help slumping hitters tweak their current approach/mind-set. The human mind is fragile, so if you (as a hitting coach) can introduce some new element into either the set-up or the swing itself the hitter can snap out of a slump by training his focus on the new information.

        This is comparable to changing your swing thought in golf. Major improvements can be accomplished by shifting one's focus. A GOOD hitting coach separates himself from the pack by helping hitters in this regard.

        • Bill says:

          Not to open this flood gate, but this has been my main criticism of our current hitting coach. People seem to miss or ignore that key role of a hitting coach. They get on here and argue that the major league level is not the place to fix your swing, these guys are pros, etc., etc. But the criticism isn't about that. It's about exactly what you're pointing out. I don't evidence that our hitting coach has the skill to help with mindset or approach. Every night I see clear signs of bad mindset, no approach, or no strategy. Last night, twice guys popped up on the first pitch where the previous at bat showed a clear lack of control - Lobo did it following a bad walk, Roberts did it after Matt extended to 3-1 and got a pitch he wanted for a single. Not sure what approach has you swinging at first pitch and popping out after that. But I don't want to be DD. We are scoring runs. I just hope it's not luck and I hope some leader starts helping Escobar.

    • Rob says:

      Speaking of BJ Upton, he has the third worst batting average in all of baseball for hitters who qualify (and look who is at #5):

      1. Aaron Hicks (MIN) .133
      2. Adam Dunn (CHW) .145
      3. BJ Upton (ATL) .157
      4. Ike Davis (NYM) .178
      5. Yunel Escobar (TB) .180

      On a side note, Jeff Keppinger has the worst OBP of all major leaguers at .188 (still hasn't drawn a walk this year) and his OBP is actually lower than his batting average (.191) - how does that happen??

      On a side, side note, Jeff Keppinger also has the worst WAR of all major league regulars (-1.2).

      • Cork Gaines says:

        To answer the OBP question, it is a quirk that pops up from time-to-time. It happens when a player has more sacrifices than walks, since a sacrifice counts as a plate appearance, but not as an at bat.

  7. Dave L says:

    I am just not as soured as some of you on Escobar. Sure he had a couple of crappy games but overall his defense has been solid. He was injured that one game. Yeah his bat has been not very effective seems to be a positive guy. Every player gets upset about balls and strikes from time to time. I certainly don't see Escobar as being a whiner.

    If he can just get up to his career averages offensively I will be happy. I think his defense will turn out to be an overall plus in 2013.

    He did hit a home run last night and thats a good thing remember?

    I just hope he hasn't gotten to the point with alot of Rays fans where they root against him just to prove thier dislike of him and his abilities is justified and his failure is correctly predicted.

    I for one am always happy to be proven wrong about a Rays player I doubted who turns it around..

    • Bill says:

      Well said. I'm actually feeling pity for Escobar. He is a good ball player. And, as you pointed out, he was coming off an injury to his glove hand on those two recent errors. He was clearly protecting the hand. But I have pity for him because clearly his hitting issues are in his head, and our hitting coach(es?) don't appear able to help players with that. Early in season he was just hitting balls hard, but at people. Been there. He started to turn on for few games, then got hurt. So let's wait a little longer. Disappointed so far, but not hating and not giving up.


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