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At the Mike: Going viral
spt ap MLB Tichenor
At the Mike - photo by AP Photo

Over the past week an article went, as they say, viral on social media. It was about Todd Tichenor umpiring in the MLB All-Star game that took place Tuesday night in Cincinnati. But if you looked a little closer at the article it was from 2014.

Tichenor has lived in the Holcomb/Garden City area since he was four and is a former umpire and basketball referee in the Jayhawk Conference.

He has made quite a name for himself as a big league umpire. He did, in fact, work the All-Star game a year ago in Minnesota down the left field line and worked the wildcard playoff game last year in Kansas City down the right field line.

He has been a full-time MLB umpire since 2012. Prior to that he worked at the AAA level for seven years and did several MLB games as a fill-in since his debut in 2007 in Los Angeles.

I’m sure the resume builder that finally got him fulltime work at the MLB level came from his face-to-face confrontations with Mike Warren or the occasional barking at Craig Fletchall.

For those interested in the Umpire Ejection Fantasy League standings, and yes there is one, Tichenor right now sits in a tie for eighth with three ejections this season.

Tichenor gained Sports Center fame in 2009 when he ejected four people in the span of an inning. He tossed Minnesota Twins catcher Mike Redmond for throwing his mask to argue a close play at the plate and his manager Ron Gardenhire followed with an ejection.

In the bottom of the inning he tossed Boston Red Sox catcher Jason Varitek for arguing balls and strikes and his manager Terry Francona followed as well.

For the record, he never threw Mike Warren from a game but he did T-up Fletchall once at the Sports Arena.

Both Fletchall and Warren would tell you his was one of their favorites in the Jayhawk and were always glad to see him working their games.

At just 38 years old he hopefully has a World Series or two in him.

The heat of summer has descended on Kansas. Of course that coincides with my daughter’s cross country camp this week for Great Bend High School.

The athletes are running each day at 6 p.m. – pretty much the heat of the day. I’ve watched them a bit, and, well, don’t feel too sorry for them. They are teenagers. When I was young it was much hotter, and a mile was much longer back then as well.

All kidding aside look for the Great Bend boys to be pretty darn good this year. A core group led by Kerby Depenbusch is back for the boys.

The girls have some talented runners returning including Karen Razo from the state meet along with some good young runners.

All fall sports are just around the corner actually.

Athletes will be showing up on campus the first week of August for some of the fall sports at Barton. High Schools can begin practicing in just about a month.

Here on the hill both men’s and women’s soccer teams had some talented freshmen last season that should provide coach Aaron Avila a foundation to build around.

Volleyball has reloaded and will feature nine freshmen this season for coach Phil Shoemaker in his third season.

It will also be the inaugural season for coach Mike Bammes and the Barton wrestling program.

So enjoy the final month or so of summer – it will be gone before you know it.