Umpire Brian Kennedy took “inserting yourself into the game” to a new level on Wednesday.
The former minor league ump is now calling games in Taiwan, and his decision to toss an EDA Rhinos pitcher for seemingly no reason kicked off a bizarre series of events.
When Kennedy sent the Rhinos hurler to the showers after a pitch high in the strike zone — but right over the plate — in the fourth inning, manager Chiung-Lung Huang ran out to protest. The two argued awkwardly through an interpreter — a strange sight in itself — before Huang bumped Kennedy with his chest.
Umpires never like being touched, and doing so is a surefire way to earn an ejection. But before tossing Huang, Kennedy grabbed the Rhinos manager by the neck until the two were separated by players.
In an even more incredible twist, Kennedy “called the police during the fifth-inning break and announced his intention to press charges against Huang,” according to the United Evening News. Fifteen officers reportedly showed up at the ballpark and requested a written deposition from Huang before Kennedy changed his mind.
Legal action may have been avoided, but both parties were disciplined by the league. Kennedy and Huang were suspended for 10 and three games, respectively, and both were fined.
See the incident in its entirety in the video below, with a hat tip to Eye on Baseball.