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NPR's Morning Edition
Broadcast 28/07/1999, Story 13

Major league baseball umpires have withdrawn their resignations but for many it may be too late in the american and national leagues hundred twenty five replacement umpires mean that about one third of the sixty eight major league umpires may lose their jobs

N. p. r.'s tom goldman is here tomorrow morning but brilliant job action was always i'm just getting we don't resign so what happened as well

Um a rather risky strategy by the umpires union fell drastically

Apartheid to two weeks ago as a labor tactics more than fifty of the sixty

In umpires announced that uh they would resign on september second there's a no strike laws and the colonel tires contract

And they figured if they threatened mass resignations a critical time of the season market for the white house the major league baseball would would be forced to start negotiating a new contract rather than accept the resignations of losing six

Or in some sense have to pay them millions in termination i well understand that figure on baseball made very clear that the empires were expendable umpire started individually to rescind resignations and then with the rank and file falling apart for seeing in to announce yesterday that it was for sending all of the resignations storm big victory for murdering them

Yeah i would say sell on the major league baseball for some time has wanted to change the landscape regarding the umpires and and these mass resignations kind of played into baseball's hands and she said major league baseball hundred twenty five minor league replacement it's currently accepting some of the resignations of two young sons now want back

So it appears the rich phillips the head of the umpires union miscalculated on both the union so

And and that baseball's reliance on the current experience on its hands we re going into the postseason this is really a serious conspirator with those kinds of milk it seems like we just heard from

Ah skirt yes but but the hurt is getting more as uh and more serious i suppose as we approach the end of the current umpire contract which expires uh at the end of this year they're the most contentious issue between these two seems to be one of control becomes are are people who demand control they say the needed to run their games high commissioner bud selig wants to control the umpires basically i mean he wants to um have oversight of the empire's right now the american and national leagues

Oversee their own stables of umpires what the commissioner's office wants to do to centralize supervision see can we got the ban umpires the ones who are perhaps more confrontational the ones who consistently make bad calls the ones who seem to be setting their own standards for calling balls and strikes

And there with the centralized system for evaluation of the few for baseball to denote and fire fire the answer

And uh and and to enforce a sense strikes down on which baseball says would lead to better ball sort of an american uh uh union arms and replacement on

Now it'll be very soon to a place that first of all what legal steps the empires are going to take to retain their jobs for those who resigned then on resigned but his resignation maze of major league baseball caps at that time then we still have to uh you know this new contract for uh the emperor's to negotiate will reach the phillips lead negotiations for the umpires he's been head of the union for twenty to twenty one years but his supporters obviously been splinter uh by this incident

And then i guess for baseball fans the question is and the concern is depending on how this plays out you know well that manifests itself on the field will it affect officiating and in the outcome of gains a lot of fan support from wherever they're not act on a lot

N. p. r.'s tom goldman

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