Tuesday, July 03, 2007

WCHA Director Of Officials Disrupts Baseball Game

Greg Shepherd Makes 2007-08 Bad Boyz List

From: Southwestern Review News
by Seth Loy


Greg Shepherd, 58, a former West St. Paul city council member & currect WCHA Director of Officials, apologized last week for offensive remarks made during a Little League baseball game.


The grandfather of eight, a former member of the city's Parks and Recreation Advisory Committee, disrupted the 9 and 10 year-old boy's championship at the West St. Paul Sports Complex on Father's Day, June 17, when he yelled at an umpire.

"I got just a little carried away with my mouth to an umpire that made a call," Shepherd said. "I was embarrassed and I wanted to apologize to everybody. I said it was my fault, and I should know better."

Shepherd wrote a letter to the South-West Review in which he apologizes to the fans and both baseball teams. However, this isn't the first time he's caused a public disturbance on the baseball diamond.

On June 3, 1998, Shepherd, then a sitting council member, interrupted a team of 11- and 12-year-old boys practicing on a freshly chalked and lined field at the sports complex. He reportedly yelled and cursed at the teams' coaches to get the children off the field because there was a men's fastpitch ballgame scheduled for 6 p.m.

He later offered a public apology for his behavior.

"[The players] were told to stay off the fields, and they would repreatedly ignore instructions," Shepherd explained. "At the time, given the position I was in, I took the hit. I still to this day don't believe I was wrong, but I still know I have to apologize."

Blown out of proportion?
"The problem is, it's a tournament, and tensions and emotions can get raised - beyond a point that is reasonable, frankly," he said.

John Pelano, co-commissioner of baseball, said in Shepherd's defense that the umpire's delayed call that prompted Shepherd's outburst frustrated other fans, too. Pelano said he thought the incident was resolved quickly and may have been blown out of proportion.

"It wasn't where there was going to be fisticuffs," Pelano said. "There were a few people that weren't happy with the way they handled the call. Mr. Shepherd wasn't the only one. The coaches had a normal discussion. I took control of the situation and got involved."

Letter: 'Sorry' for rude ballfield behavior
To the editor:

I, Greg Shepherd, would like to apologize to all the parents and grandparents that were at the West St. Paul Complex for the ball game between the West St. Paul and Mendota Heights 9- and 10-year-olds. The was I acted was very uncalled for. To both teams' players and coaches I am truly sorry. You try to teach sportsmanship and here is myself acting like a complete idiot. And to the umpires I am very, very sorry for any remarks I made toward you. It was uncalled for. I am truly sorry.

Greg Shepherd
West St. Paul

5 comments:

Donald said...

I notice the article doesn't say "current WCHA" so is the reporter trying to keep this on the "down low"?

St. Paul really is HELL!

dggoddard said...

Its all out in the open now.

Goon said...

I think the league schools should ask for Greg's head.

Anonymous said...

He apologized and it didn't happen at work, so its unlikely anything will happen.

However, it looks terrible when the NCAA devotes so much energy to sportmanship promotion and an incident like this occurs. Its just wrong on so many levels.

dggoddard said...

This situation is pathetic, not because he yelled at the umpire, but because as a former referee, he knows how to manipulate and bully the refs.

He shouldn't be fired for what he did, but publicizing his behavior is punishment enough. I hope he learns from the incident and takes steps to improve sportmanship in the WCHA.