Baltimore Orioles: “Professional audication”


No day in the life of professional sports comes without controversy. That’s true in the world of the Baltimore Orioles, as well as in that of the NFL. In watching Sunday’s games, it came to my attention that the Washington Redskins’ Trent Williams alleged that an official had cursed him out during their loss in Philadelphia (click here for ESPN’s version of the story). There are some who will make snarky comments such as “the ref’s just telling him the truth” and so forth. However break down the situation to it’s bare bone facts and see what you think…

Courtesy of Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

…the fact is that there’s no sports fans in American who should think that this type of decorum is okay on the part of referees or umpires. I’ll grant that they take a lot of abuse during games, and I’m sure that at a certain point they get tired of that. However the fact is that as an official you have to stand above that. Just as the President isn’t supposed to react when he’s jeered someplace, as a game official you have to do the same. Quite frankly, I can’t think of a situation in baseball where an umpire has ever said something quite this egregious to a player or coach, however the same applies.

Anyone who watched the game between Washington and Philadelphia knows that the officiating didn’t play into the outcome. However the officials are supposed to be unbiased, and swearing at a player or calling them names makes it tough to argue that the officials are unbiased. I also heard multiple reports to the effect that some of the Philadelphia players claimed they heard it as well, and were shocked that a ref would behave in that manner towards a player. The NFL will be investigating this, however it appears to be a story that has some legs beneath it.