Schilling in hot water for breaking camera

Posted: May 28, 2003

Major league baseball's disciplinarian is looking into Curt Schilling's destruction of a camera used to evaluate umpires.

The Arizona pitcher smashed part of the Questec Umpire Evaluation System Saturday night during a loss to San Diego and said umpires have told him they are changing their strike zones to match the evaluations of the machine.

"I'm investigating it in the fullest," Bob Watson, baseball's vice president of on-field operations, said last night. "I haven't finished my investigation yet."

Watson won't complete his inquiry until tomorrow at the earliest.

"All I'll say at this point is they're better off investigating the Questec system instead of Curt Schilling," players association lawyer Gene Orza said.

Larry Gibson, a lawyer for the World Umpires Association, said that umpires had complained about the operators of the system in Phoenix this year. Gibson said that a former Triple A umpire ran the system during Arizona home games last year, but that different people were operating Questec this year at Bank One Ballpark.

Sandy Alderson, executive vice president of baseball operations in the commissioner's office, wasn't aware of the identities of the operators.

"If you are a baseball fan and subscribe to AOL, you can operate the system," Alderson said. "It's not about the system . . .

"What this is about is about is Curt Schilling wanting pitches that are balls, called strikes. If that's what he wants, he should go to the rules committee. Otherwise, he should stop whining and go about his business."

Questec is being used at 13 of the 30 major league ballparks this year. The WUA has filed a grievance, claiming the computer is inaccurate and its results change depending on the operator.

Schilling could not be contacted before Arizona's game at San Francisco last night.Schilling is 3-3 with a 3.36 ERA in nine starts this season, with a 1.96 ERA in three road starts and a 4.39 ERA in Phoenix.

Noteworthy

* Misdemeanor charges were filed against Oscar Villanueva, of Panorama City, Calif., who ran onto the field at Dodger Stadium during a game last week and tried to shake hands with Dodgers outfielder Brian Jordan.

* St. Louis acquired righthanded reliever Esteban Yan and an undisclosed amount of cash from Texas in exchange for minor league outfielder Rick Asadoorian.

In games last night:

* At Chicago, Kenny Lofton extended his hitting streak to 25 games, and Aramis Ramirez had four hits as the Pittsburgh Pirates beat the Cubs, 9-4.

* At Atlanta, Chipper Jones led off the 10th inning with a homer, giving the Braves a 3-2 victory over the Reds.

* At St. Louis, Jeff Kent homered and had three hits in the Houston Astros' 7-4 victory over the Cardinals.

* At Denver, Larry Walker drove in four runs as the Colorado Rockies topped the Los Angeles Dodgers, 7-3.

* At San Diego, Brady Clark and Keith Ginter hit back-to-back two-run singles in the ninth as Milwaukee rallied to beat the Padres, 4-2.

* At Miami, the Marlins' game against the Montreal Expos was rained out and will be part of a doubleheader today. *

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