In a rare act of contrition by a Major League Baseball umpire, Dan Bellino apologized on Friday for his interaction with Arizona Diamondbacks left-hander Madison Bumgarner two days earlier.
Bumgarner had been visibly upset with plate umpire Ryan Wills’ strike zone in the first inning. When the frame ended, Bellino, the first base ump, called over Bumgarner for a typical check of his hands for banned substances.
Video showed Bellino holding Bumgarner’s hand but staring into the pitcher’s face during the check. Bumgarner appeared to say to Bellino, “Take your (bleeping) time,” after which the umpire ejected him from the game.
Bellino issued a statement on Friday that read, “I would like to address my actions on May 4 involving Madison Bumgarner. When I began my MLB career almost 15 years ago, I received some good advice. I was told to umpire every game as if my children were sitting in the front row. I fell short of those expectations this week. While I can’t go back and change what happened, I take full accountability. I will learn from this incident, and I sincerely apologize.”
Bumgarner had said after the Wednesday game, in which the Diamondbacks beat the host Miami Marlins 8-7, “I know why I got thrown out, yes. I don’t know if I can say anything that would make the situation better, so what I’m gonna say is I’m extremely proud of our team coming back and winning today because I put us in a big hole there.”
According to ESPN, Bellino was disciplined by MLB for his dealing with Bumgarner. However, Bellino was back on the field on Friday, umpiring third base as the Detroit Tigers visited the Houston Astros.
–Field Level Media