Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Umpire mistake nets suspension

Home plate umpire Fieldin Culbreth (25) talks to Padres third base coach Glenn Hoffman before the first inning Friday at Tropicana Field.


Home plate umpire Fieldin Culbreth (25) talks to Padres third base coach Glenn Hoffman before the first inning Friday at Tropicana Field.

ST. PETERSBURG — After working a relatively smooth Rays-Padres game Friday, Fieldin Culbreth took "all the responsibility" for the latest umpire controversy.

Culbreth said simply he and his crew "got confused" during Thursday's Angels-Astros game and allowed Houston manager Bo Porter to improperly change relief pitchers.

"We just got to cross-sectioning different rules within the changing of a pitcher and just had a hard time getting back on track from that," Culbreth told a pool reporter. "At that point we thought we were doing right. We now know that we were doing wrong."

Culbreth was suspended two games (to be served later), and he and crew Brian O'Nora, Bill Welke and Adrian Johnson were fined unspecified amounts.

"I look at it that baseball has high standards for their umpires, and I have high standards for myself, and I didn't meet those standards (Thursday), so I am absolutely okay with everything," he said.

The controversy arose in the seventh, with the Astros up 5-3, when Wesley Wright came from the bullpen and threw several warmup pitches. Porter ran in to stop him because the Angels had a pinch-hitter ready and he brought in another reliever, Hector Ambriz.

Angels manager Mike Scioscia argued that under Rule 3.05(b) Wright was required to pitch to at least one batter, but crew chief Culbreth allowed Ambriz to stay. Scioscia protested the game, but the Angels rallied to win 6-5.

Porter said he spoke to Culbreth afterward when he realized he was wrong and on Friday made a public apology for causing the problem.

Culbreth said it was still his responsibility: "I look at it that the players and the managers, they go out and play the game, and it is our job, whether they are knowingly or unknowingly getting outside the boundaries, to get them back in, and I fell short of keeping them inside those lines."

On Wednesday, Angel Hernandez and his crew failed to reverse a call after seeing video that looked to anyone else, a clear home run. Tom Hallion was fined for an incident with the Rays' David Price.

Umpire mistake nets suspension 05/10/13 [Last modified: Saturday, May 11, 2013 12:25am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Lightning: Jon Cooper takes unusual tact to create mismatches

    Lightning Strikes

    TAMPA — Tyler Johnson is about to swing his left leg over the boards for his next shift alongside linemate Alex Killorn and ... whom else?

    Stamkos? Kucherov? Point?

    Tampa Bay Lightning head coach Jon Cooper argues the called as his team gets a faceoff violation, leading to penalty and #Caps PP goal, during second period action at the Amalie Arena in Tampa Monday evening (10/09/17).DIRK SHADD   |   Times
  2. A buzz-worthy look at the Astros-Dodgers World Series matchup

    The Heater

    Houston Astros' Yuli Gurriel is congratulated by Jose Altuve after scoring during the fifth inning of Game 7 of baseball's American League Championship Series against the New York Yankees Saturday, Oct. 21, 2017, in Houston. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip) TXMG170
  3. Florida, FSU try to ignore death threats, angry fans


    GAINESVILLE — Frustration over uncharacteristically down seasons at Florida and Florida State has started to spill over from message boards and start crossing real-world lines.

    Fans watch the Florida Gators game against Texas A&M, at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium, in Gainesville, Fla. At the half, Florida was up 10 to 3.
  4. Fennelly: Would you take Jameis Winston over Cam Newton?


    Factoring out futures, it wouldn't be a short list if I picked NFL quarterbacks I'd take right now over Bucs quarterback Jameis Winston.

    Bucs quarterback Jameis Winston (3) calls a play during the first half of Sunday's game. [LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times]
  5. Bucs Cannon Fodder podcast: What went wrong on defense?


    Greg Auman is back from Buffalo, going back over a difficult finish and tough loss for the Bucs, in his latest Cannon Fodder podcast.

    Buffalo Bills tight end Logan Thomas (82) makes a touchdown catch over Bucs defensive back T.J. Ward (43) during the second half. [LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times]