Phillies: 2008 World Series umpire Kerwin Danley promoted

Home plate umpire Kerwin Danley #44 calls out Rocco Baldelli #5 of the Tampa Bay Rays (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)
Home plate umpire Kerwin Danley #44 calls out Rocco Baldelli #5 of the Tampa Bay Rays (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images) /

Kerwin Danley, one of the 2008 Phillies-Rays World Series umpires, has recently been promoted to crew chief

Kerwin Danley, the third base umpire when Philadelphia Phillies closer Brad Lidge struck out the Tampa Bay Rays’ Eric Hinske to win the 2008 World Series, has been promoted to crew chief, the Major League Baseball Umpires Association (MLBUA) shared on Saturday.

“One of the highest honors in the officiating world is to be put in charge of a crew of officials,” MLBUA tweeted. “Four of our members were given this honor by MLB prior to the start of the 2020 season. The MLBUA congratulates our new Crew Chiefs. You truly deserve it.”

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During the 2008 World Series, Danley worked at first base (Game 1), home plate (Game 2), right field (Game 3), left field (Game 4), and third base (Game 5). Ironically, Danley worked behind home plate during the only game the Phillies lost that series en route to their second-ever championship.

Now as crew chief, the 59-year-old is responsible for overseeing his four-man umpire crew and resolving any dispute with players and managers, as well as leading the call for all replay reviews and deciding when to have the tarp placed on the field during weather delays, among other things.

The Associated Press first reported Danley’s promotion in late February, making him Major League Baseball’s first-ever African American umpire crew chief.

Danley, excited about the honor, called it a “significant moment” in the history of baseball. “But it’s not just about me,” Danley continued. “It’s much more than that. It shows African American kids there is something else they can make it in, besides playing.”

MLB’s three other crew chief promotions in February included Dan Iassogna, Jim Reynolds, and Alfonso Marquez – MLB’s first Hispanic crew chief born outside the U.S. (second overall).

Danley, Iassogna, Reynolds, and Marquez replaced retiring crew chiefs Jeff Kellogg, Dana DeMuth, Gary Cederstrom and Mike Everitt.

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Kellogg – who worked alongside Danley under crew chief Tim Welke in the 2008 Fall Classic – and Everitt have since transitioned into MLB umpire supervisor positions.

Danley’s major league umpiring career began in 1992, before his full-time promotion six years later. In 1999, he was at first base when Hall of Famer Tony Gwynn notched his 3,000th career hit.

In addition to the 2008 World Series, Danley also has notably been assigned to the 2018 World Series between the Los Angeles Dodgers and Boston Red Sox, as well as the 2007 (San Francisco) and 2016 (San Diego) All-Star games. Danley has also worked in 10 other postseason series.

“[Danley] is known for having an even temperament, always an attractive quality when MLB picks its crew chiefs,” The Associated Press writes. “He has totaled just four ejections in the past five seasons.”