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Prospect Young chucks bat at ump
By MARC TOPKIN and MIKE SCANDURA
Published April 27, 2006
NEW YORK - Top prospect Delmon Young likely faces severe disciplinary action after flipping a bat at an umpire after being ejected from Triple-A Durham's game Wednesday at Pawtucket, R.I.
After being called out on strikes on a 1-and-2 pitch in the first inning, Young lingered in the batter's box for an unusually long time and was ejected. He then flipped his bat underhanded toward the umpire and struck him above the waist.
Replacement umpires are working minor-league games because the regular umpires are on strike, and teams are uniformly not releasing the replacements' names.
Pawtucket assistant GM Daryl Jasper released a statement from the umpire that read: "It's an unfortunate incident and there should be no place for actions like that in the game of baseball. Any official should not be treated like that. He embarrassed himself and his teammates."
International League president Randy Mobley is expected to start a review of the incident today.
Young left without commenting. Durham manager John Tamargo described the incident as "unfortunate" and "a tough situation right now" but said he wanted to talk to his bosses before commenting. Spokesman Chris Costello said the Rays will have no comment until the situation is reviewed.
Pawtucket catcher Corky Miller said Young didn't say anything to the umpire but "I think he took a little bit too much time (before walking to the first-base dugout), more than the umpire would have liked him to."
Miller also said: "It was hard to say what was going through his mind. Guys have emotions. But you try to learn how to control them. I'm sure as the bat left his hands he knew it was a bad decision and he'll be punished for it."
Young, 20, is considered the Rays' top prospect and is expected to be called up at some point this season and begin what is expected to be a stellar major-league career.
Young was named Baseball America's minor-league player of the year last season, though he has created some problems with his behavior, including using a team-arranged conference call to blast Rays officials for not promoting him to the majors.
The Rays are believed to have interest in acquiring reliever Tyler Walker, who was designated for assignment Sunday by the Giants.
Walker, 29, saved 23 games for the Giants last season but struggled this spring and in six appearances this season, allowing nine runs in 51/3 innings for an 0-1 record and 15.19 ERA.
GLAD TO BE HERE:
Left-hander Mark Hendrickson rejoined the Rays and hopes to pick up tonight where he left off, a shutout against Baltimore on April 6 in his only start of the season.
"I feel good; mentally sharp, physically good, ready to go," he said.
He went on the disabled list with shoulder tightness but did not expect to be out this long.
"I didn't think it was bad," Hendrickson said. "I think the one pitch that held me back a little bit was my curveball."
Carl Crawford extended his Yankee Stadium hitting streak to 11 games. ... Manager Joe Maddon said Josh Paul will be Seth McClung's personal catcher for now. ... With 18 homers, Jonny Gomes and Ty Wigginton went into Wednesday as the top pair of home-run hitters in the majors, one more than Oakland's Nick Swisher and Eric Chavez.