Gibbons was right and Jeff Kellogg was wrong. Period.
I’m not talking about whether Ben Francisco was safe on his bunt attempt (I think whether Edwin Encarnacion trapped the ball or not, it was a close enough play to go either way). I’m referring to rule 9.02 c which states: “If a decision is appealed, the umpire making the decision may ask another umpire for information before making a final decision. No umpire shall criticize, seek to reverse or interfere with another umpire’s decision unless asked to do so by the umpire making it.”
The Yankees did not appeal the ruling on the field. The firstbase umpire did not initiate the meeting of umpires to “get it right”. Therefore, Kellogg broke a rule and Gibbons had ever right to speak his mind about it (leading to his second ejection in as many nights).
I’m not sure if there is an automatic fine for an ejection, but Gibbons shouldn’t have to pay it. In fact, Jeff Kellogg should have to pay a fine for breaking a rule of the game.
Umpires are the most arrogant of all sports officials. I don’t mind the missed calls – there are part of the game and umpires are human. But to break a rule from your own handbook? When an umpire does that, there should be a fine. How else can we ensure that umpires are calling a game to the best of their ability? Every umpire should know the rules – plain and simple.
Fortunately, the rule-breaking play by Kellogg didn’t lead to any runs and didn’t make a difference in the outcome of the game. Hopefully, it doesn’t have an outcome for Gibbons’ wallet.