In the sixth inning of tonight's game, we saw a play we've seen hundreds of times before. Jeff Niemann threw a pitch inside to Nyjer Morgan, who turned his back to it. While he was turning away from the ball, it hit the back of his right elbow. And, as you usually do in that situation, Morgan began to trot to first base.
Unfortunately, that's where home plate umpire Bob Davidson decided to make himself a factor. He ordered Morgan to return to the plate, ruling that he hadn't done enough to get away from the pitch. It's a call you nearly never see. Morgan went on to strike out.
Of course, Davidson wasn't done. He watched Morgan walk back to the dugout, presumably looking for a reason to eject one of the Brewers' last healthy outfielders. When Dale Sveum yelled something from the dugout, Davidson ejected him instead. Then he also ejected Ron Roenicke. The Brewers eventually loaded the bases in the inning but failed to score.
Davidson is no stranger to controversial calls and ejections in Milwaukee. He was the home plate ump on September 7 of last season and ejected Ken Macha, Chris Dickerson, Cardinals pitching coach Dave Duncan and, in something I don't recall ever seeing at Miller Park before or since, a fan.
Ken Macha was nearly never ejected during his time with the Brewers, but Davidson tossed him. Ron Roenicke now has one career ejection and it also came from Davidson. This should probably tell you something about the kind of umpire he is.
The state of major league umpiring has become an absolute joke. The fact that Davidson likely will not be disciplined for his conduct tonight is a large part of the reason why.