Yet two-time World Series champion Curt Schilling, who never misses a chance to let fly his opinions, explained why he has never sent Bucknor a “World’s Greatest Ump” coffee mug.
“I don’t think [Bucknor] is trying to draw attention to himself, I just don’t think he’s a very good ump,” Schilling wrote on his blog, 38 Pitches, “and in his tenure in the big leagues has not improved even a little.”
Schilling wrote that the two ways to know an umpire is bad is if he is constantly in arguments with players and coaches and if both the pitchers and the hitters are complaining.
“The MLB umpiring system is the most flawed thing in the sport,” Schilling wrote. “There is very little oversight or demand for a major league level of performance.
“I have an immense amount of respect for [baseball executive] Sandy Alderson, but I think he’s failed horribly at implementing a system to force umpires to improve their performance in the major leagues.”
Bucknor, who missed a number of calls at first base in Game 1 of the ALDS, will be the home plate umpire on Friday.