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#pounditFriday, March 24, 2023

Video: Mike Rizzo ejected by Joe West, Hunter Wendelstedt

Mike Rizzo

Umpires Joe West and Hunter Wendelstedt had Washington Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo ejected from Sunday’s game in a move that left many stunned.

The Atlanta Braves were leading the Nationals 7-1 in the top of the seventh inning when Wendelstedt began pointing to the club level at Truist Park. The umpiring crew, led by West, then went to call security. The Braves’ announcers speculated that West might not have liked Rizzo complaining about balls and strikes. They also mentioned that Rizzo was not wearing a mask in the park.

The ejection took place after a called strike to make the count 2-2, lending more credence to the idea that Rizzo was tossed for complaining about a call. The second strike was called despite being well off the plate.

When there are no fans in the stands and so few spectators, odd incidents like this have a higher likelihood of taking place. West takes plenty of grief for his odd actions, and he was spared no criticism for this incident — deserved or not.


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