NEW YORK – Bill Miller and Jeff Nelson have been promoted to crew chiefs by Major League Baseball, which added seven umpires to the big league staff as part of the expansion for increased instant replay.
MLB agreed last month to boost the umpire staff by six members, and an additional ump was hired to replace Wally Bell, who died in October of an apparent heart attack.
The new members of the staff announced Thursday are Jordan Baker (age 32), Lance Barrett (29), Cory Blaser (32), Mike Estabrook (37), Mike Muchlinski (36), David Rackley (32) and D.J. Reyburn (37). All seven were minor league umps who filled in at the big league level in recent years for umps who were injured or on vacation.
Justin Klemm was hired in the new post of director of instant replay. He was a minor league umpire for nine years.