Dustin Pedroia Calls Joe West’s Pace-of-Play Comments ‘Ridiculous’


April 9, 2010

One person who would have answered a heartfelt "no" to NESN.com's kgb Poll Question of the Day on Friday? Dustin Pedroia.

"To call the Yankees and the Red Sox, two of the best teams in baseball, 'pathetic' and 'embarrassing,' that's just ridiculous," Pedroia told ESPN.com on Friday. "If he doesn't want to do Red Sox and Yankee games, he should tell the umpires' union. Then when we're in the World Series, he'll be out of that assignment, too."

Joe West complained after the conclusion of the Boston-New York series earlier this week that the games are running too long. The umpire has been in the major leagues for 32 years and has worked over 4,000 games.

"They're the two clubs that don't try to pick up the pace," West told the Bergen Record on Wednesday. "They're two of the best teams in baseball. Why are they playing the slowest? It's pathetic and embarrassing. They take too long to play.''

Now it appears that West could be penalized for his brash comments, as sources told ESPN.com's Wallace Matthews that the crew chief is likely to be reprimanded.

According to Pedroia, it was quite obvious that the umpiring crew was dissatisfied with the rate of play.

"Remember [home plate umpire] Angel [Hernandez] denied [Derek] Jeter a timeout?" Pedroia asked. "Ridiculous."

The three games of the series lasted 3 hours and 46 minutes, 3:48 and 3:21 (10 innings), respectively.

Yankees closer Mariano Rivera was equally peeved at West's comments, telling ESPN.com, "If he has places to go, let him do something else. What does he want us to do, swing at balls?"

Red Sox manager Terry Francona, when asked about West's controversial comments, was careful to be a bit more diplomatic.

"Obviously, I think I need to be somewhat careful is the right word, selective,'' Francona told the Web site. "I mean, I think it kind of surprised all of us. When you have somebody in charge of running the game without bias, and then you hear those comments coming out pretty strong, it probably worries you a little bit.''

But Francona doesn't necessarily believe that nothing needs to change about the length of these games.

"They always have been [too long], and are probably always gonna be,'' he said. "I've had 20 knee surgeries. I'm not jogging to the mound. I can't do it. It hurts.''

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