February 2, 2008

MLB Snooping Around, Asking Neighbors If Umpires Are Klansmen Or Potheads

Tom Christopher (not pictured at left), the supervisor of security and investigations for Commissioner Bud Selig, has been sending investigators to ask the neighbors of at least three MLB umpires if they are members of the Ku Klux Klan.

World Umpires Association president John Hirschbeck:
The questions that we found out are being asked are about beating wives, marijuana use and extravagant parties. And then finally with this whole thing about the Ku Klux Klan. ...

Once again, baseball's favorite way of doing things: Ready, fire, aim. It's not a good way to start the season.
That list of question topics is amusing: criminal assault, illegal drug use, throwing a big party. What might MLB mean by "extravagant"? The noise level? Inviting more than a "normal" amount of people? Spending too much money on booze and food?

The wire story mentions last year's FBI investigation of NBA referee Tim Donaghy, but it's pretty much impossible to tell what (if any) connection there might be.

In a follow-up story, there is a bit more information. World Umpires Association union spokesman Lamell McMorris:
We did not anticipate that they would approach neighbours posing as a close colleague and friend of the umpire's and asking them questions ... [MLB is] conducting a very strange and poorly executed investigation. It resembles kind of secret police in some kind of despotic nation.


L-girl said...

Very strange and poorly executed - perfect for MLB. This is indeed strange.

gojohn said...

Is this 1958 or 2008??!