MLB umpire Joe West
Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

MLB umpire Joe West knew when he took the job that things would be rough with verbal attacks from fans, players and coaches. During Thursday’s game between the Washington Nationals and Toronto Blue Jays, West experienced a new aspect of the job when he got hit in the face by a bat.

In the bottom of the first inning, Blue Jays shortstop Bo Bichette took a huge swing at Erick Fedde’s fastball. Unfortunately for West, Bichette lost control of the bat and it slammed into the umpire’s face.

While some of his peers chose to skip the 2020 MLB season due to the COVID-19 pandemic, West wasn’t going to let the virus keep him away from baseball. With three All-Star Games and six World Series under his belt, he is one of the most recognized umpires in the sport.

West came into this game with more than 40 years working as an umpire and despite all the things he’s likely been through, this will certainly go down as one of the scariest and most memorable moments in his career.

He was removed from the game with umpire Vic Carapazza taking over behind home plate. Let’s hope West makes a speedy recovery and can return quickly to hear managers and players welcome him back then harass him over calls.

Matt Johnson
NFL, MLB & college football writer for Sportsnaut. Graduated from San Diego State University with BA in Journalism, 2019. Grew up in Sacramento, now based in Indianapolis. Seen on MSN. Previously: eDraft, The Connection, With the First Pick