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Jeff Passan: Accuse Ohtani of being naive, but not gambling

The Rich Eisen Show / Rich Eisen
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April 15, 2024 2:40 pm

Jeff Passan: Accuse Ohtani of being naive, but not gambling

The Rich Eisen Show / Rich Eisen

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April 15, 2024 2:40 pm

Rich and the guys react to Scottie Scheffler winning his second green jacket in three years with a convincing victory at The Masters.

ESPN MLB Insider Jeff Passan and Rich discuss possible ripple effects from the Shohei Ohtani/Ippei Mizuhara gambling/theft scandal, how soon fans and players can expect a balls & strikes challenge system to arrive in the Major Leagues to hold umpires like the notorious Angel Hernandez more accountable, why the A’s move to Las Vegas is anything but a sure bet, and more.  

Rich weighs in on the “witches brew of incompetence and arrogance” that is MLB umpire Angel Hernandez.

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Find out how to bring your ideas to life at slash welcome to now. Let's go! This is the Rich Eisen Show.

I want to hear you! Live from the Rich Eisen Show studio in Los Angeles. A friend from Sports Illustrated is back here on the Rich Eisen Show, Albert Breer. I'm just wondering, are we seeing the receiver position viewed more like a running back?

It's become replaceable because there's so many great ones because that's where all the great athletes in the sport are gravitating because of the passing game. Today's guest, ESPN MLB insider Jeff Passan, NFL film senior producer Greg Cosell, actor Henry Cavill. And now, it's Rich Eisen. Yeah, what a fun show we've got in store for you over the next three hours for the Rich Eisen Show back on the air after a big sports weekend. Once again, we've got all three hours here on this Monday and so many different ways for you to watch us and listen to us. We say hello on the Roku Channel television audience. We're streaming every single day live between 12 and 3 Eastern Time. We also say hello to a Sirius XM Odyssey, our streaming audience there. Our terrestrial radio audience and the Rich Eisen Show radio network coast to coast. We say hello to those who are listening to us on demand or watching us on demand through our podcast or the Rich Eisen Show collection page.

There's no way to avoid us. We love talking with you at 844-204-RICH-NUMBER to dial. We're a show here for you to the point where one of us today over the next three hours is purposely going to screw up so we can win you some free chicken.

That's how we roll today on the Rich Eisen Show. The NBA playoffs are essentially all set. The Masters green jacket's been handed out again. Major League Baseball is beginning to heat up. We love it. The National Football League's back in action with many different people showing up to work because the veterans are appearing. It's the off-season workout program.

The draft is in 10 days. My God, it's a great time to be alive. Good to see you over there, Christopher Brockman. How are you, sir? Fired up.

What's up, man? Good to see you, DJ Mikey D. Rich, I'll screw up for everybody. You screw up for free chicken.

I'll free chicken. You're the Boban of the Rich Eisen Show. Mike, you are our Boban. You are our Boban. I wish I was that tall.

That's true. Good to see you, TJ Jefferson. Candles lit. Candles lit. My Knicks might be playing your Sixers, sir. Let me tell you, this weekend wasn't as good as last weekend, but man, UFC 300.

Oh yeah, as well. It was amazing. Max Holloway, oh my God. One of the greatest knockouts ever. Not in UFC, not in boxing, in the history of life. It was one second left in the round. It was unbelievable.

So UFC 300 went down. They had Max Holloway, Max Homa. There's a lot of Max's. Max is here. Wherever Max Kellerman is, he's like, what? Max Hedren?

Max Hedren? Listen, what we saw over the weekend from Scotty Scheffler is as outstanding as it gets and one of the toughest tests of mental and physical acuity that we can have in any sports event anywhere. The Masters. And Scotty Scheffler gets it done again, wins his second green jacket, and he does it in style.

Listen, you always need a little bit of luck in your own skill, right? And the rest of the field that seemed to be on his tail as everyone was making the turn from the front to the back and begins to put it in the water or put it in vines or just have the golf gods essentially say to them, not today. And Scotty Scheffler did his thing, which is basically being flawless, which is basically being somebody who can meet the moment when the moment appears to be as huge as it possibly gets. The guy has, I mean, he's got a Federer way about him, you know, where it doesn't seem that he sweats at all. He doesn't seem to panic.

He doesn't seem to have a pulse, this guy. That's really good. I haven't heard anyone bring up Roger's name when talking about Scotty in the last 24 hours. We can make any shot, right? I really like that.

I really like that. You know, and that's the way it looks like to me when he's out there. It's like, does he have jitters? Does this guy have a jitter in him?

Because right now it sure doesn't appear to be the case. How about a 35-day stretch where you win the Arnold Palmer Invitational, the Players' Championship, and the Masters all in 35 days? That's what he's done. And he's the first guy to win the Players and the Masters in the same year since Tiger did it in 2001. Speaking of Tiger, at age 27, Scotty Scheffler becomes the fourth youngest to win multiple green jackets. Jack did it at age 25. So did Tiger.

Different days to separate them in terms of age. And Seve had two jackets by age 26. Speaking of Tiger, how about winning multiple green jackets by three or more strokes in each time? Tiger in 97, in 02, Seve in 80 and 83, Jack in 65 and 72, and Sam Snead at 49 and 52. He's won two green jackets and five Masters starts. That's the second fewest number of starts to win multiple green jackets. The one who has the record is a guy named... Give him a nudge because he's not paying attention over there. Horton Smith was the guy to do it.

Who the hell is Tim Horton? It's not like we discussed it before the show. Mike, get off your phone. I feel like I'm talking to my kids. I'm doing something. Okay, good.

Horton Smith won... By the way, Horton Smith won two of the first three Masters ever. Did you know that? Ever.

I did. I only heard it yesterday, so yeah. That's like being the Bart Star of the Masters. Yeah. You know what I mean? Right.

Oh, what'd you do, Horton? I just won two of the first three Masters. And at the time, it's probably like, what's the Masters? What's the Masters? Yeah.

Let's do a thing down in Georgia. One day, you will know. I mean, so this is what he's doing.

Yeah. And remarkably, Chris is the only other individual in this room who can understand this. How do you know what I can understand? Because you don't have kids. Oh, okay. Well, that's true. You've got neither.

And you've never had a partner in life that is getting ready to give you a child. And I have one. As you know, she sits in this chair.

There's a best mom ever sign that replaces my best dad ever sign when Susie sits in here. It's true. Well, at any rate, I was going to go in a certain direction, but I didn't. Horton.

That's how we have Taylor. But anyway, listen. Oh, wow. Wow. And then you said it. I did say it. I knew you'd like that. No, but in all seriousness. My eyes see you. My eyes see.

But in all seriousness, it's tough to focus when your spouse, your wife, your significant other is ready to give birth. At any moment. At any moment. He even talked about withdrawing. Yes. If she went into labor at any point. Right. Doesn't matter how big his league was.

He was going to leave. Does it matter though? Honestly. Yes, I do. Oh, I do believe it. I do believe it. There's only one first birth in your life as a husband and a father. There's only one.

If they had already had a kid. I'll see you when we're done. Oh, you think so? Okay. But he's already had a jacket.

See, that's where I argue. He's already had a jacket. He already won one. And I cannot stress this enough. I cannot stress this enough that I'm sure he is locked in on shot making and putting the golf ball where it needs to be placed. I forget who said it over the weekend because I'm watching on the Masters app and then I'm watching on ESPN Plus and I'm watching on my Roku is white hot to the touch, right? CBS.

The broadcast. And so I forget somebody was saying that playing the Masters is, I could have been Van Pelt. Something along the lines that to succeed at the Masters, you've got to know where the ball can be and can't be and how to get out of the spot when you put it where it can't be.

That that's basically how you navigate Augusta National. Imagine doing that, knowing that you could get a call at any moment. We're done here because you got to go and be there for the birth of your child.

Your first child. His wife, Meredith, was at her aunt's home in Dallas. And he could have been hopping a flight. There might have been actually a plane waiting.

I would imagine there was. You know, I mean, he's got the cash to hire a ride and sit there and pay for the taxi time to sit there and be at the ready just in case he's got to fly to Dallas to be there in time. I mean, that's two and a half hours.

You got to get going. And so, I mean, it's as remarkable an achievement as you possibly can have. And he kind of alluded to it after it's over. I mean, everything that I mentioned, too, I forget to even mention here that he had seven birdies on the day. That's the most in the final round by a Masters champion since Sir Nick Faldo at eight and eighty nine. And he did become the first odds on favorite prior to the first ball being struck, winning it all since Tiger did it in 2008 at the U.S. Open for any major tournament.

Unbelievable. It's Masters favorite to win since Tiger in 05. It's truly remarkable what he did, thinking that he might because, again, sure, he's locked in, but at some point it's going to creep in like, I wonder how Meredith's doing. This is what he had to say after winning it all yesterday. I feel like playing professional golf is an endlessly not satisfying career. For instance, in my head, all I can think about right now is getting home. I'm not thinking about the tournament.

I'm not thinking about the green jacket. I'm trying to answer your questions. I'm trying to get home. I wish I could soak this in a little bit more.

Maybe I will tonight when I get home. But at the end of the day, I think that's what the human heart does. You always want more. I think you've got to fight those things and focus on what's good. Because like I said, winning this golf tournament does not change my identity. My identity is secure and I cannot emphasize that enough. And obviously you have to give kudos to Meredith as well for basically saying, go ahead and do your thing to create the space for him to go and win the Arnold Palmer Invitational Players in the Masters in 35 days while she's in her final days of being, I'm sure, obscenely pregnant. And by that I mean, oh my goodness gracious. So you understand what I'm saying here, right?

And in terms of what he's saying about his identity, this is a great soundbite as well. I'll read it here because he said, I love competing and I'll definitely enjoy the birth of my first child. I will go home and soak in this victory tonight. My priorities will change here very soon.

My son or daughter will now be the main priority along with my wife. So golf will now probably be fourth in line, which means he doesn't know if he's having a boy or a girl, which means it's entirely possible over the back nine when, when, you know, Aberg and Murakawa put it in the water and Houma was in the vines and it looked like he's going to cruise to victory. Somebody could have set it up with Fred Ridley and Augusta National to have the hole on 18.

As soon as the ball goes in, like a poof of blue or pink smoke comes out. The first gender reveal in the history of the Masters tournament. Now that's a gender reveal we would get. You know what I mean?

It's incredible. Could have set it up. Very anti-gender reveals, but that one I would have made an exception for. On the 18th hole at Augusta. Boom.

And, or every, you could have given everyone in the crowd, like one of those, one of those like rocket poppers and then hope puck goes in, but Nance line, boom. But then again, uh, if he's, he and Meredith have not learned the identity yet, the gender identity yet, they probably wouldn't want, you know, the good folks at Augusta National to do such a thing, a tradition truly unlike any other. I can feel it. And this, by the way, just to wrap up this part of the conversation, cause I can't get enough of the fact that, that he did this while knowing he could just get a tap on the shoulder and say, this is happening. He would go, he would go, right. Which would truly be, that would have been, uh, you know, sports wise and golf wise earth shattering. Well, there would have been some takes on Monday. So, so that he could do this in this setup at this place in this environment and, and be so spectacular at winning, right?

I can't get enough of it. This tweet made me truly LOL as the kids say, uh, Justin Ray, who covers golf after conquering golf. Now, Scotty Scheffler gets a bigger challenge, correctly getting a car seat installed without yelling obscenities. Which is impossible.

Oh my God. The car seat is undefeated. Let me tell you something.

And unlike a golf ball, the car seat doesn't listen to curse words because I truly believe when I curse at the golf ball, I frequently can hear what I'm saying. Okay. And you can't call the fire department to help you get a birdie on 18. You can't. Okay.

The fire department will install the car seat. Trust me. I'm aware of it three times. You had the fire department do it?

It's TJ. It's very difficult. One, it's insanely difficult and frustrating. And two, you trust, you kind of like golf. You kind of doubt your abilities sometimes.

And the last thing you want to do is learn the hard way you didn't install it properly. That's a non-negotiable there. That one made me laugh out loud. Congratulations, Scotty Scheffler, who apparently, if Meredith has not given birth, is he going to play this week? He's slated to play in the RBC Heritage in Hilton Head on Thursday. He's like, well, until you need me, hon.

An elevated event immediately after the Masters is aggressive, but Scotty is just like, oh, cool. He's going to stay in there for a little while. And the rest of the field at the Heritage is rooting for an epidural.

Rooting. Can we schedule a C-section here? Can we schedule something? Is this going?

Because the way Scheffler is playing, it's lights out. You're playing for second place right now. You have a chance to win this week. Can I ask you guys a question about this? Now, obviously, I know the right thing to do is be there for your child, right? But I'm thinking- No, you're being- For your wife. I'm sorry. No.

No. But I'm sorry to interrupt. You're being there for yourself. I'm telling you. You don't want to miss it.

You don't want to miss it. Now, here's my question, right? Now, because I like to think sometimes like I'm the fan at home and I know someone's thinking this. You have a chance to win the Masters.

Now, this is kind of weird because he already has one, but let's say it meant he didn't have any. You are in a position now to set yourself up and your new family for the rest of their lives if you win this thing, right? Do you then really say you've got the lead and it looks like you're going to coast the victory? Yes, you miss it. Do you? You miss it. Knowing that a win is going to change your family this baby's life forever.

He's already rich. I get it. I'm just saying like whatever.

No, it's just no, no. Like I said, I mean, I'm not just doing this to, you know, what virtue signal is that the phrase that you say in the world or whatever we don't say that other people in all seriousness. You don't miss it. You don't miss it for yourself. You don't miss it for your spouse. You don't miss it for every reason. You don't miss it. We'll take a break. Jeff Passan is going to be joining us next.

Greg Cosell, by the way, is also joining us to give us his two cents and what he sees from the top quarterbacks and what he sees on tape. And then Henry Cavill is in studio. I'm telling you his new movie, the ministry of ungentlemanly warfare. I've seen it. It is awesome. You will love it. Can't wait to talk about it with him.

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See eBay Here we are on the Rich Eisen Show, everybody, back here. Vern Lundquist said farewell after 40 years on the Masters coverage and while Tiger was going through, CBS's coverage was not yet on the air. So he's coming through 16 and there was a shot that they saw he was behind the tree. Just peaking a look at Tiger finishing up on 16. Vern, an 83-year-old Vern Lundquist just making sure the 48-year-old Tiger Woods, he'd see him one last time.

Just like the rest of us, right? And then Tiger went up to say hello to him and then this photograph was taken where it was Vern just reaching, all you saw was his arm and it's just like Tiger meet Woods, you know? It spawned a million memes.

It spawned a million memes. My favorite one was like because he went to Stanford, it's the Stanford tree right there. Like shaking hands at the actual real live Stanford tree. What was the one he and the tree hit on Thanksgiving making amends or something?

Yeah, that one was pretty funny, too, actually. So there he is, Tiger, saying hi to Vern. Pretty cool with Tiger to do that, too. Of course. I mean, I don't know if he saw it or someone gave him a heads up, but he went over there after he finished the hole and talked to Vern for a few minutes.

Yes, sir. Because they were the featured group on Tiger really stunk on Saturday, so he was in, you know, got off super early on Sunday and so he wasn't on the main CBS broadcast.

Yeah. It was cool to him to go do that. He made his 24th consecutive cut.

That sets a record. And then he had a very difficult Saturday and Sunday and Vern was there. So cool. We've reached out to Vern to join us over the next couple of days. I hope we get a positive response. He has time and the inclination to want to talk about it. That'd be great. Have you ever in your life when Tiger chipped in on 16 years ago with one last golf ball rolling down? Back here on the Rich Eisen Show radio network, I'm sitting at the Rich Eisen Show desk furnished by Grainger with supplies and solutions for every industry. Grainger has the right product for you.

Call or just stop by. A ton of stuff happening in Major League Baseball, as we all know, entering, coming close to one month ago from when the Dodgers and the Padres opened everything up in South Korea. And then everything began to come out about Shoei Ohtani's interpreter joining us to discuss that.

And so much more. Our buddy from the worldwide leader in sports, Jeff Passan, how are you doing, Jeff? Living the dream, my friend. I am actually, every time I come on this show, such a deep admirer of your sweater game.

Ah, thank you. You have a great sweater collection. You really do. You are a true man of leisure.

Thank you. And you pull it off very well. I have very few moves left, Jeff.

You'll find out when you get to be my age. But you haven't even seen. Hold on a minute. Wait for it.

I've got patches. Oh, my God. Professorial. Dr. Eisen, how are you? That's right. Professor Eisen in the studio with the MLB insider from ESPN. How's that?

Like a game of Clue. All right. That's great. Thank you. I appreciate it.

What what is your I can't I can't get over the patches. That's great. I know he can't get enough of it. It's great. I like it. I've got him. I've got him. You know, it's just you can't even you can't even see him on the radio, but I feel better.

Makes me sit up straighter. All right. Let's let's jump into it here. What's your take, if there's any such take on the Shohei Ohtani Ipe Mitsuhara to do?

Here's how I see it. If you read through the thirty seven page complaint and I know that you have and us reporters have, it's a pretty good case that the federal government lays out that the story that Shohei Ohtani told to the public in his statement, it checks out and there are just a number of elements in there, whether it's the lack of communication over, you know, thousands upon thousands of pages of text messages between Shohei Ohtani and Ipe Mitsuhara that refers to gambling. There's nothing in there about that.

There are the admissions of Mitsuhara. I am a terrible gambler, he says like multiple times. And then at the end, the whole technically I did steal money from him. It's you know, it's it's not an open and shut case ever, because, look, there could be a grand conspiracy in place here. But that conspiracy would involve Shohei Ohtani, Ipe Mitsuhara, the Los Angeles Dodgers, the Los Angeles Angels, the federal government, authorities, Ohtani's agent, his accountant, his financial advisor, banks, like there's so many different parts of this, that in order for you to believe that this was actually Shohei Ohtani and not Ipe Mitsuhara, you have to believe that everyone played his or her role to a T and fooled everyone. Now, we've seen situations in life where that has happened.

But the truth is, this may just be Occam's razor rich. The simplest thing is Ipe Mitsuhara had a gambling problem and stole money from his friend confidant and employer Shohei Ohtani and is going to go to jail for it. Well, and that's the question I have is the ripple effect, if if there is any, because if I'm let's just say I'm Rob Manfred and the commissioner of baseball, I'm sure ready to get the green light from the federal government to see that everything is, you know, T crossed and I dotted to just basically say we're moving on here.

There's nothing against Shohei Ohtani. Case closed. I would definitely try what you'd call the players association to see how we can look into all interpreters to make sure that everybody does have another avenue of communication with his representation, would you call the representatives like how how would you make sure that a bad lieutenant interpreter doesn't sully the game and tarnish any of the major stars international of this sport?

How would you do that? Right? Yeah, I listen, I think due diligence and background work is paramount in these sorts of things, especially when you're talking about a forward facing person like the interpreter. But I think ultimately, like the lack of communication or poor communication comes back on Ohtani's camp, does it not?

Like if if you have a guy who's going to be signing for 700 million dollars, I understand your desire to go and trust the person who's there, who Shohei Ohtani himself trusts. But you know, there there sometimes needs to be an additional layer of protection. And that's what was lacking here. That's why when they went and asked him about the bank account in question, Ipe Mitsuhara said, oh, he wants to keep that private. And there was nothing that they could do to go back to Shohei and say, hey, do you really want to keep this private?

And why? Like, we're not trying to push too much. But this is something that's important. And a lot of money is going into there.

So do you know what's going on with that money? If those conversations have happened, Rich, none of this would be as big as it is. But because those conversations didn't happen, you got to look back on it now, if you're anyone around baseball and say, OK, how can we prevent the same sort of thing from happening to us? Yeah, I guess like that's the moment, right, that that because any any conversation you do have with Ohtani like that, however, had to have Mitsuhara in the room and he's the one doing the interpreting unless Ohtani does understand enough English to get to the gist of the question from very concerned looking representatives of his that he also trusts. So I guess that's also another question for you, Jeff Passan, is how much English does Ohtani understand?

And is he one of those bubble type guys that would just, you know, go rake, go pitch, figure everyone else is just handling everything and not notice 16 million dollars missing from from his direct deposit Artie Marino account? You know what I mean? Sure.

Well, I'll answer the latter question first, because I think that's very pertinent here. Yes, I can 100 percent see a scenario in which he doesn't check his bank accounts because he's extremely wealthy and money is not of a concern to him, really. You know, he's not the person who's going out and getting all kinds of material things. That's just not his style. And, you know, if you look in the complaint, the government investigators say Ohtani had not logged into that particular account under his I.D.

in years. So if you want to accuse him of something here, you can accuse him of naivete. You can accuse him of being surrounded or surrounding himself with the wrong people. You can accuse him of not having the sort of financial literacy necessarily that somebody is going to have when they have that much money coming in.

But from the evidence, you can't accuse him of gambling because there is no compelling evidence for that. You know, in terms of the first question, this is one of those situations where my second answer went so long, I forgot what it was. You're going to have to remind me of it. Does he speak English?

I was film-bustering so hard there. I was trying. No, I'm sorry. No, no, no.

No. Does he understand? Does he understand enough English to potentially if if there was that moment where agent, bookkeeper, financial advisor, CPA, all in the room, all in Nesbilello's office, looking right at Ohtani with Mitsuhara sitting there as his interpreter. And they basically say, there's some account that Ipe tells us you don't want us to have eyes on. And we're really concerned about that. Would he understand that to the point where Mitsuhara could basically say they just want to know, how's your dog?

And he would just go, oh, yeah, everything's OK. Right. Like, so that's the question I was asking at first.

Yes. I let me give you two examples here. Example number one, I don't know if you saw Sunday Night Baseball last night, but show a ton of standing there talking about his shoes and talking in really good, if not perfect English. The second one at the World Baseball Classic last year after that final at bat against Mike Trout, that incredible strikeout that he had on one of the nastiest sweepers I've ever seen. I, you know, he was walking toward the press conference room and I sort of sidled up next to him in the hallway and, you know, as a reporter, you try and get like these, you know, walk and talks that you sometimes get some of your best stuff there, especially when the clubhouse wasn't open at that event. And we just had a perfectly nice conversation about not just how cool that was, but how that's going to be a pitch in a bad that's remembered for a long time to say that Shohei Otani is fluent like you or I don't think that's true to say that he understands English well enough to both hold a conversation and be able to get what's going on in a scenario like the one you presented.

Yes, yes. He gets English well enough there. And I think the way that we know that is from the story that is being told right now, Otani realized something was a little bit off from Ipe Mitsuhara addressing the Los Angeles Dodgers Clubhouse when they were in Korea. That's how the alarm went off in his head. Now, has has he really been shielded this entire time from everything that's been going on? If the answer is yes, then that's a dereliction of duty from the people who are there to protect him. And if the answer is no, then there are lies going on either way. It's not great and not a great look for the people involved.

No, but the as you point out, just before we move on to other matters, Jeff Passan here on The Rich Eisen Show is 9700 pages of text messages in Japanese between Otani and Mitsuhara that were on Mitsuhara's phone that the investigators looked at. Not even a single syllable had anything to do with gambling or asking anything that might look like a as a euphemism for over or under or anything. I mean, and one would think that if you're considering rich, considering there were nineteen thousand. Exactly. You'd think there would be one thousand. Yeah, exactly. You think that they like we all slip, you know, you think you might slip there right once, once, once. And then the one one one aspect as well that was written in is a is a an aside by the the agent who was looking.

Yeah. Well, no, the the agent involved who was investigating, who was the narrator, if you will, of this affidavit was like if he was covering for his debts, if Otani was shelling out to cover for the debts, why would he let the interpreter take the winnings and put it into his own personal account? You know, like there are so many different compelling reasons in this affidavit to totally agree with the fact that Otani did not gamble or anything to do with that. I've got Jeff Passan here on The Rich Eisen Show. Now let's move on to a subject matter Major League Baseball also wouldn't want us to talk about.

And that is Angel Hernandez. My God, Jeff, this weekend was the latest example, the latest example he missed. He missed three pitches outside the zone and called them strikes one, two and three in the Rangers Astros game. Now, it didn't affect the final score, but it's just another example of how does this continue to happen and allowed to be gotten worse? Can you explain best you can to the viewers and listeners of the show how this keeps happening or is allowed to keep happening in baseball? I think there's a very simple explanation.

J.P. Francis Cutter is absolutely magical. I mean, how otherwise are you going to see a ball that's six inches outside the zone getting called a strike? But it's not just that, too. And I know that some other umpires are, you know, we're all fallible, right? We're all humans.

Sure. It just seems there was another moment I saw on my feed where Jeff McNeil was asking if he had a time out left in his at bat. And Angel Hernandez said, time out. And he's like, no, I was asking if I still had a time out. And he just refused. You know, it sort of reminded me like that Phil Luckett moment on Thanksgiving where he thought that was heads and not tails. And he refused to even ask for help.

He refused to even consider that the argument was in front of him was a potential valid one that should make him rethink his thought process. It's just and it seems like a witch's brew of incompetence and arrogance that continues to get worse every year, Jeff. What happens? Well, when you put it like that, you know.

I'm sorry, I don't mean to lay it at your feet, but so what is the process here? Is it just that there's no way to rectify this, address it, anything, Jeff? I mean, of course, there's a way to address it and rectify it, especially when it comes to the balls and strikes element of it. And that's what's going on at Triple-A right now. It's interesting. Somebody in the game reached out to me a little bit earlier this week and said, why is it that balls and strikes are better at Triple-A than they are at the major leagues? And I had never thought of it that way. But if you think about it right now, the system at Triple-A includes automated balls and strikes.

And especially the challenge system that's in place. I don't know if you saw Paul Skeen's last outing. I did. And I saw that video twice. Yeah, through two pitches that were on the corner and that were nasty and that were called balls.

And he touches. Oh, can you do it one more time so I can see the patches? Yes. Thank you.

If only Skeens had the patches. But by the way, he was right each time. And how long did it take? Like seconds to rectify? Five seconds. Five seconds. It's easy. It engages fans at the ballpark.

Like challenge systems, it's really good. And when it comes to the big leagues, when the automated balls and strikes are about umpires, however you want to call it, come to the big leagues, I do think it's probably going to be in challenge form rather than every single pitch being called by the automated system. Makes sense.

Yeah. And if that's the case and they can right wrongs, then great. And beyond that, Rich, you know what this will do? This will hold umpires accountable publicly the same way or in a in a harsher way, frankly, that they're held accountable privately right now. But they are protected by the MLB umpires association. And you know, if Major League Baseball wanted to get rid of Angel Hernandez, who, by the way, sued them for racial discrimination and was embroiled for a long time in a in a federal lawsuit, well, that's the sort of thing that I think if you had the evidence of how many different times someone has gone and screwed up, it would be a lot easier, presumably to oust that person from the spot. So how soon are we going to see?

Because again, I saw the Paul Skeens sort of mash up again on my social feed this weekend. And while amidst my jaw hitting the the table based on his remarkable talent for this kid in the Pirates organization pipeline right now, the two instances of him saying, no, no, no, that wasn't a ball. It was a strike. He just tapped his head and it was immediately looked at.

And I did notice the audible like cheers from the from the crowd as they were watching the live. I guess I imagine on the diamond vision, for lack of a better phrase. It's on the. Yeah, it's on the jumbo. Everybody's seeing it up there.

And it's and it's very interesting. I mean, it's simple. You see a little spot right there and then it has a trail and then you got the box. And if it's in the zone, it says strike, it says overturned. And if it's not, then it says ball and the guy was going to run the first base like it's a really, really simple system that to me achieves a whole lot in terms of accountability like strikes and balls are not up to umpire judgment in a perfect world.

They are binary. Either a pitch is in the zone or it's not. And in the way it is with the human eye, it's I mean, let me say this, Rich, I think majorly umpires are incredible at calling balls and strikes. What they aren't is perfect. And if perfection is what you are looking for or hoping for, that's the ideal to achieve that you have a uniform strike zone, then an automated system is a must have. It's just a necessity and if the technology supports it at this point, then what are we waiting for? I'm not looking for perfection because we know that that's impossible.

I'm just looking to remove the outrageous, outrageous misses by somebody that just seems to get worse every year. So just to put a button on this, when is this? It's a competition committee conversation. When do we get this at the major league level?

It could be 2025, it could be 2026. Something worth noting though, in the last collective bargaining agreement, rich major league baseball received the ability to implement new rules in 60 days rather than over a year, which they used to have, which is to say that if this off season MLB decides to put the ABS system in play, it will be there for next year. And by the way, can I, can I just say one more thing on accountability here?

Let's say, let's say there was a challenge system in place. And that first cutter from JP France was called the ball, went like this and it was overturned. Angel Hernandez doesn't call those next two pitches that are even further out for strikes. And so it's in the moment changing the way that guy's on fire, which is exactly what you want, right? It's a lot better than a post-game report that says this is where you screwed up. A million percent. I hope, I hope we see it sooner rather than later. Before I let you go, is the A's move to Vegas a done, done deal, Jeff, or did I see that there's some sort of a referendum that voters in, um, in Clark County, Nevada could, could, could say no to this? Like what, what's the scoop on this front right now, Jeff, is that, is that, is anything with the A's ever a done deal? I mean, I guess not.

I don't know. Well, I mean, unless, uh, yeah, I guess Aaron judge is going to Homer in Sacramento, I guess. Oh yeah.

That's really looking forward to that one. I know. Yeah, it's, you know, there's a, there's a perception among some people that Sacramento was gung ho for the A's moving there because they are convinced that the Vegas deal is going to fall apart because it always falls apart. You know, they've had 20 years of deals, potential, like potential deals falling apart with the A's. And so, uh, the, the idea that Vegas is done now, is there an agreement in place? Yes. Do they have the funding?

They, they believe that they do. Um, but until a shovel goes into the ground and until you see steel being moved to create this stadium, I am not going to say a single thing about the Oakland A's becoming the Las Vegas A's because we are a long ways off from that. We are. So it's entirely possible. They moved to Sacramento and then they, and then the Vegas deal falls apart.

And then where, where are we left? Right. Like that, that's still a possibility. That's what you're saying. You know, like the, you know, I remember my, uh, one of my first internships, I covered a, an independent league team called the Lancaster Barnstormers believe that they still play baseball right now, but they were just on the road perpetually, like didn't have a home stadium. And so they just went out on the road.

I don't think that's going to happen with the A's, but the idea that they're going to be playing in a, in a triple A stadium, uh, for, for the rest of time, it would be very fitting for the Mickey mouse way that that organization is run at the top. All right, Jeff, thanks for the time. Everybody in the studio is curious. Is that an actually functioning, working Nintendo beyond your left shoulder? Yes, it is. Absolutely.

It is. Yeah. You know, people ask sometimes what are the games? What do you got? What are these games? Yes. What are the games? What do you have?

We got Mike Tyson's punch out. Yeah. RC pro-am. Okay. Right. Yep.

What is that? The goat of games. RBI baseball.

RBI baseball. The goat of games. Yes, sir. The original.

And of course the original super Mario brothers. Fantastic. So for those who were curious, tune into the rich eyes and show and you'll, you'll get your answer. Okay. See, I'm old school with the patches on my elbows and your, your I'm old school with my video games. Right. And listen, uh, it's great to see you in your elements, sir. Certainly based on last time, I believe you were on this program or last year, um, you were in some sort of weird space in a closet.

Yes. I was in the closet. That was, uh, what that is. That was the water. That was the water filtration system and an ice machine. Oh, I thought it was some sort of Hudsucker proxy type tube, uh, communication that you just send that in there and just, it would go up and like, uh, you'd say I'm okay down here.

So I don't know. It was at the all star game in Seattle and there was like Julio, Julio Rodriguez had like a morning party and, uh, I was there, they're shaking hands and, and the phone rang. I was like, Oh God, forgot about this one. So I had to hustle off to somewhere quiet and quiet was the water filtration room, 12th floor, but at least you looked good.

And the water was pure brother. You knew it. So, and I appreciate as always you joining the show, miss Chatham with you. Let's do it again. Soon. You'd be well. I need patches. You do next time.

I want to see it. That's Jeff Passan, ESPN, MLB insider extraordinaire right here in the Rich Eisen show. All right.

I want to have a couple more cents on the, this whole instant replay system and how it can really help major league baseball. Let's take a break. Come back. Our number two, we'll focus on the NFL draft. Why not? It's 10 days away.

And his keen eye in the sky coming up. Let's talk sleep number people. We all know quality sleep is essential. I'm just not myself when I don't get a good night's sleep. That's why the sleep number smart bed is designed for your ever evolving sleep needs.

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You won't regret it. Our house is a mess. Come on in. I'm Amber Wallin, internet comedian and host of your new favorite podcast, fly on the wall.

That's pretty presumptuous to assume that this is going to be their favorite podcast, by the way. Anyway, that wasp that you just heard interrupt me is my husband and cohost Benjamin Wallin listening as we discuss relationships and keeping our sweet baby kid alive, fly on the wall and wherever you listen. So we just saw the old Mike Tyson punch out and Nintendo tape formulas. I mean, sometimes you used to, they used to malfunction, you'd have to blow into it and pop it back in. Right. That was the beauty. Oh yeah. That's great. They've updated Mike Tyson punch out. Oh, they have? Yeah. There it is.

I can't wait for this to be Jake. He tweeted. Honestly, what is Chris Mannix talking about? No. Was that piston Honda he was sparring against there? Did you just look that up?

No, I know Mike Tyson. He had no idea that was coming. Yeah, I didn't. He didn't know that was coming. That was covered. Is he going to like nicely done? No, Chris Mannix has said multiple times you might, you might've been out of the chair of those days.

So there's no possible way that Mike Tyson wins zero. He laughs about it. He laughs that we keep even bringing it up and the fact that we keep showing the videos, he's just like, thank you. Netflix should send you guys a check. Yeah. Rich, by the way, you probably don't know this. We posted that on Instagram of the real of Chris saying that, you know, who took Umbridge in our comments.

No, we fixed alone. Basically tell Mannix he didn't know what he was talking about and like, and I was like, wow, Frank Stallone, big New Jersey DJ. I don't know. I guess all, all the, all of us here and all the Stallone's are old school. I don't know. We're like, we, we, we, we, you know, we can't forget what Tyson used to do to be the past tense.

And by the way, it's been decades since he did it to people. And, but I mean, that, that looks, I mean, I'm taking Tyson. That looks pretty good to me. But as Mannix has said, we still don't know the rules. We don't know much. We don't know if it's should be coming back here for some playing tournament games and first round and NBA playoff games. So we'll bring it up again, Frank's favorite subject matter.

I'm sure back here on the rich eyes and show 8 4 4 2 0 4 rich number to dial. Uh, being a, um, a ref or an umpire in this day and age where everybody has 4k at home and certainly an umpire in major league baseball, where, um, you get a strike zone that is put on the screen with a rectangle and a dot appears right on the screen with how fast the pitch that just came in was and exactly the location of it. And you could see whether the ball or a strike that was just called is correct or not right away. And it is tough and I totally understand how tough it is, but what angel Hernandez is doing behind home plate is just increasingly worse and worse and worse and more infuriating with each passing day.

Cause as I said to Jeff passing before, it's a witch's brew of incompetence and arrogance. I shortened that for the fantasy name purposes, because the number of times that you see an argument that has had, and even sometimes when other umpires are called in, I don't know what it is out of deference, they don't correct it. But behind home plate is just one man behind home plate.

And he, he, he just, he just keeps calling one ball after another. That is a strike or one ball after another. That should be a ball he calls a strike or it's a strike and a ball, and it just keeps messing it up. See I'm not perfect.

I kind of even just messed up the setup here, but I don't believe I'm getting worse and worse and worse every day. And you know, we saw over the weekend, Rangers are up eight one, Wyatt Langford at the plate and and bases are loaded and then three balls in a row, three ball fours in a row get called strikes. So far outside. And the last one was so far outside that one of the websites that, that they're out there that makes it more and more difficult to umpire, cause they are parsing it down to the nth point at umpire auditor said that the last ball that he called strike three was outside by 6.78 inches, a half a foot. And somebody even put an overlay of Anthony Rizzo on it cause he is notorious for standing on top of the plate in the batter's box to see if it would have hit him. It would have basically almost hit him.

Wow. Now, there is a system in minor league baseball right now where the technology that you see on your app, when you're, when you're watching a game through, uh, like the MLB game day, where you're just seeing sort of a graphic of a player standing at the plate and a ball coming in and where it hits the strike zone that is being used right now in real time for a pitcher or a hitter to tap his head cap or helmet, depending on pitcher or hitter to say, I want that reviewed. The umpire steps out, turns up to the press box and make some sort of a move. And then on the screen in the stadium, in comes the pitch that just got thrown in a graphic style. If you've seen tennis, the way that you review a play in tennis, again, it's, it's not the actual video of it.

It's a graphic moving graphic rendering of it, but it's accurate to ball or a strike. They change it. If it's needs changing or stay with the call, if it needs staying and on we go, let's go. I'm not saying to do that for every pitch.

Use it when it needs to be challenged. Let's go. What are we waiting for? No idea, because all you needed to do if you're Wyatt Langford was challenged that first clear ball that was called a strike. And then that strike, you know, that's, that's a ball and that's it over. And then you do it on the second time.

You take your base and you get an RBI and Angel Hernandez is stopped in his tracks by technology. Let's go. I don't know. He gets worse every year and fans can't take it anymore. I throw him out. Let's do it.

I'm sure he might be a nice guy, but I am sorry. Enough is enough because like I said, there was a moment where I believe Jeff McNeil, because the catcher was having a problem with his pitch comm on his knee and couldn't get the pitch called with his pitcher and the, and the, um, the at bat, the pitch, we were waiting for it. The at bat was getting longer. And Jeff McNeil turns to Angel Hernandez and says, do I have a timeout remaining? And Angel Hernandez calls timeout. You just heard the words timeout. And McNeil's like, I didn't call timeout.

I'm asking you, do I have a timeout left? And he basically said, no, that's your timeout. And he's like, I didn't call for one. It's like an Abbott and Costello routine in the middle of an MLB game, all because he should have stopped play because the catchers pitch comm wasn't working.

Right. So instead of realizing the moment and being the arbiter of the actual moment in front of him, he's just in his own Angel Hernandez world and didn't ask for any help. And everybody's left shaking their head, cursing and muttering under their breath about him. And we're sitting at home saying, what the hell's going on with this guy?

Because it gets worse and worse and worse every year. The umpire auditor had one last week of Anthony Volpe at bat. The pitcher stepped off the rubber and they got back on it and they called it a strike. And he's like, dude, he stepped off the rubber. I know. And Angel's just like, I don't know. That's the call.

Yeah, the call's a strike. And it's just like, it's insane. And again, I know it's a tough world, but hey, he's making it tougher for you because I have less patience for you because suddenly this guy's marauding every day, marauding. The Rolling Stone Music Now podcast gets inside the biggest stories with Rolling Stone's senior writer, Brian Hyatt. Now here is my conversation with Jacob Noll. Your story is an amazing one. And obviously you lost your dad when you were only one year old. It was definitely a screwy way to grow up. I think that a lot of people never heard of who I am and then they see me joining this band and they must think this kid must have just abandoned everything or nepotism kid. It's a gift that I have an opportunity to sing in such a big band like my father and my uncle's band, Sublime. Rolling Stone Music Now, wherever you listen.
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-04-15 16:25:14 / 2024-04-15 16:48:38 / 23

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