Was umpire purposely targeted?
Wolcott hit by pitch after arguments with catcher
NEW YORK — A person familiar with the situation tells The Associated Press that Major League Baseball is reviewing how an umpire got hit this week by a pitch that a catcher missed in a game between the Detroit Tigers and Cleveland Indians.
Plate umpire Quinn Wolcott was struck in the left shoulder Wednesday by a fastball from Detroit’s Buck Farmer that sailed past the mitt of backup catcher John Hicks.
Two batters earlier, Wolcott had ejected catcher James McCann and Brad Ausmus after a close pitch to Cleveland’s Jay Bruce was called ball four.
Wolcott was knocked over by the impact of Farmer’s pitch. As he was being examined by a trainer and talking to the other umpires, Wolcott appeared on a TV replay to ask them: “They didn’t do it on purpose, did they?”
The Tigers had bickered with Wolcott throughout the game about his strike zone. After Detroit lost 5-3, Farmer and Ausmus vehemently denied any intent to deliberately hit Wolcott.
The person told the AP that MLB was checking the circumstances of the play. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because MLB was still looking into the matter.
Wolcott stayed in the game at Cleveland after the incident in the third inning with Yandy Diaz batting. The bases were loaded with two outs, and no runs scored after the ball bounced off Wolcott.
Tigers manager Brad Ausmus and catcher James McCann argue with home plate umpire Quinn Wolcott during Wednesday’s game.