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Do not squeeze Roy Halladay

Apr 17, 2012, 8:23 AM EDT

Roy Halladay

Home plate umpire Marty Foster had a tight strike zone in last night’s Phillies-Giants game. It peeved Roy Halladay a good bit. Then in the fifth inning he walked Aubrey Huff on five pitches, and ball four was one Halladay did not believe was a ball (and he was right). Then, according to Matt Gelb’s report, this happened:

Roy Halladay snatched the throw from Carlos Ruiz and didn’t flinch. His eyes were focused on Foster, the home-plate umpire, in the fifth inning of Monday’s 5-2 Phillies win over the San Francisco Giants.

Foster noticed the death stare. He said something to Halladay, who barked back. Then Halladay pointed to make his anger totally clear.

That normally kills a pitcher. But when you’re Roy Halladay, you’re the one who does the intimidating. Next batter Brandon Belt: a five-pitch strikeout with strike three looking. And strike three was nowhere near the strike zone, but the ump gave it to Halladay anyway.

After the game Halladay said that he wasn’t yelling at Foster, he was simply having a miscommunication with his catcher.

Sure he was.

  1. Francisco (FC) - Apr 17, 2012 at 8:36 AM

    No kidding, after that, Halladay breezed through the 6th, 7th and 8th innings.

  2. stex52 - Apr 17, 2012 at 8:38 AM

    I see two problems here:

    1. An umpire who can’t find the strike zone.
    2. An umpire who allows himself to be intimidated into make-up calls by a pitcher.

    Neither one is good.

    But nothing seems to slow Halladay down much.

  3. mercyflush - Apr 17, 2012 at 8:45 AM

    I love that Doc looked bad last night, didn’t have great velocity or location, was getting squeezed… and still went 8 ip, 2 er.

    the guy is a robot…

    • cleverbob - Apr 17, 2012 at 8:55 AM

      Any pitcher in MLB would kill for a rough outing like that.

    • thomas2727 - Apr 17, 2012 at 11:15 AM

      Getting squeezed?

      Go back and review the pitches called late in the game if you want to be objective. Specifically the Belt called strike 3.

      • CJ - Apr 17, 2012 at 12:33 PM

        You know, one’s objectivity is aided by reading these comments in their proper context. In layman’s terms, it’s called an article, or post. Specifically, the part that says that Halladay was squeezed until he got on to the ump, references the Belt call SPECIFICALLY, and says it’s smooth sailing from there.

        If you want to be objective, try reading the article before calling other people out.

      • thomas2727 - Apr 17, 2012 at 3:00 PM

        Should I yawn now.

      • stex52 - Apr 17, 2012 at 9:33 PM

        If you want. But apologizing might be more appropriate.

  4. arungupta27 - Apr 17, 2012 at 8:53 AM

    I don’t think strike three was called because the ump was intimidated– it was because he believes Belt belongs in Triple-A.

  5. Kevin S. - Apr 17, 2012 at 8:58 AM

    You mean Marty “It doesn’t matter if he tagged you” Foster? Color me shocked. #notshocked

    Somebody needs to start an umpire meta-criticism blog. They can call it FireJoeWest.

    • Jonny 5 - Apr 17, 2012 at 9:25 AM

      Well the strike zone WAS horse sh!t last night and the ump deserved the “criticism” he got. I’d like the days of the Ump being above the law to be over. If they suck send them down to the minors so another official can prove he deserves to work at a major league level more so.

      • Jonny 5 - Apr 17, 2012 at 9:33 AM

        Sorry, didn’t mean that as a reply to you Kevin

      • Kevin S. - Apr 17, 2012 at 9:36 AM

        Completely agree, Jonny.

      • cur68 - Apr 17, 2012 at 9:50 AM

        Most alarming was the non-velocity on display last night. Neither Halladay nor Lincicum had it. Doubt either of them cracked 92mph. Most of the time they they were throwing breaking balls and nibbling the corners with 88mph “fastballs”. The ump was probably confused at the lack of velocity on display from 2 guys known for throwing hard.

      • Jonny 5 - Apr 17, 2012 at 10:54 AM

        I wonder how much the chilly SF night air has to do with that Cur? I know it works against hits, why not pitches? Just a guess.

      • Jeremy Fox - Apr 17, 2012 at 12:39 PM

        Um, cur68, I don’t know that Halladay’s ever been known for throwing hard, has he? He generally sits in the low 90s. That’s why I’m not too worried if Halladay’s velocity is down a little bit this year; he’s the type of pitcher for whom that shouldn’t matter too much.

      • xmatt0926x - Apr 17, 2012 at 1:12 PM

        Jeremyfox, you’re right on. Halladay is not a power pitcher in the least. He’s very low 90’s at best and his success comes from being much more of a pinpoint accuracy guy like Greg Maddux was. His velocity is down somewhat but I always felt his type of pitching wasn’t affected by velocity loss with age as much as it would affect a power guy like Curt Schilling, who tried to be a nibbler when he lost his velocity but it just didn’t work.

      • cur68 - Apr 17, 2012 at 2:14 PM

        I haven’t watched a full game of him in 2 years. When he was with the Beaver Men, he could power pitch and he could hike it up there mid to high 90’s. Mostly though, he had great aim & movement. Now all I see is the aim and movement. Sometimes, though, without the movement. Every inning I saw hanging breaking balls. If that had been any team with a half decent hitting lineup they’d have killed him. I hope I’m wrong, but I’m kinda concerned for the skillz of one Harry Leroy Halladay III.

      • xmatt0926x - Apr 17, 2012 at 3:31 PM

        Cur, I’ll take your word for it if he was a power guy in his Toronto years, but if he was he certainly has lost that from day 1 with the Phillies. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying he’s a finesse guy who has to trick you, but when I think of power guys I think of a guy who can blow you away with mid to high 90’s heat or a very hard sinker, stuff like that. Halladay has always been low 90’s at best with the phillies with an array of 4 or 5 pitches, but at the same time won’t be blowing anyone away.

      • xmatt0926x - Apr 17, 2012 at 3:34 PM

        You’re also dead on in that he does appear to have lost a couple miles off his fastball so far and last night was certainly a grind for him but if he has permanently lost something he certainly is not losing his overall effectiveness in his first 3 starts.

  6. sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Apr 17, 2012 at 9:51 AM

    Better yet, just let Roy call his own balls and strikes. At least there won’t be any false sense of integrity or objectivity then.

  7. thomas2727 - Apr 17, 2012 at 10:58 AM

    Halladay definitely did not have near his best stuff last night. But the ump sure seemed to help him out with the outside strikes after Halladay started complaining.

  8. chadjones27 - Apr 17, 2012 at 11:58 AM

    Is it me, or is it, since the story about Halladay and Carpenter helping that dude out in the Amazon, there seems to be this legend brewing about Halladay. It won’t be long before people start coming up with bad Chuck Norris-like jokes.
    “The Devil went down to Georgia because if he came through Philly, Roy would have struck his ass out”

    • Jonny 5 - Apr 17, 2012 at 12:21 PM

      There are only 3000 of them here. 😉

    • Kevin S. - Apr 17, 2012 at 12:22 PM

      Roy Halladay’s been a well-known bad-ass long before this past winter.

  9. stlouis1baseball - Apr 17, 2012 at 12:22 PM

    It seems this is happening more and more. During the (11) inning game between the Redlegs and Nationals the other day (Sunday I believe) the umpire was squeezing the Nationals pitcher like I have never seen a pitcher squeezed before. He basically made him put it on a tee for the Reds hitters.
    To the point of Ryan Ludwick hitting a grand slam early in the game. It was bad. Real bad.
    It would have been hard not to get thrown out of that game had I been Davey Johnson.

  10. marklar1025 - Apr 17, 2012 at 1:20 PM

    I thought Halladay was acting like a first class baby last night – and was rewarded with a bigger strike zone after his stare tantrums. Dude is too good to be acting like that.

  11. thomas2727 - Apr 17, 2012 at 3:07 PM

    This is the 2nd game I have been in the stands at AT&T and watched Halladay whine like a baby at perceived slights in “his strike zone”

    Yes he got squeezed on the Huff Ball 4 it happens. But deal with it like a pro.

    He did the same whining in Game 5 of the 2010 NLCS to the point where Pat Burrell yelled out and told him to shut up. I guess he was just yelling at Ruiz that night too?

    He should be embarrassed with his talent to do so much crying.
    His crying did work last night by getting Belt rung up.

    And look at the pitch data for Brandon Crawford in the 6th and 8th inning ABs.

    The pitches are so far off the plate is it a joke.

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