August 16, 1950 |
|Occupation||Former MLB umpire|
John Andrew "Rocky" Roe (born August 16, 1950) is a former umpire in Major League Baseball who worked in the American League from 1979 to 1999 and in both leagues in 2000 and 2001. He officiated in the 1990 and 1999 World Series, as well as the 1984 and 1994 All-Star Games. He also worked three American League Championship Series (1986, 1991, 1996) and four Division Series (1995, 1997, 1999, 2000); he was a crew chief for the 1999 ALDS. Roe wore uniform number 27 throughout his career.
Roe grew up in Southfield, Michigan, and acquired his nickname because he was a fan of major leaguer Rocky Colavito. Roe played baseball at Eastern Michigan University, where he received his degree in business administration, and was a member of the team that won the 1970 NAIA national championship . Roe was inducted into Eastern Michigan University's Athletic Hall of Fame in 2001.
He was promoted to the American League staff on June 7, 1982, hours after Lou DiMuro was struck and killed by a passing motorist on a busy street in Arlington, Texas following a game between the Texas Rangers and Chicago White Sox. Roe's first crew included Larry Barnett, Mike Reilly and Durwood Merrill.
In 1996 he took a leave of absence to enter a weight loss program following the death of fellow umpire John McSherry; he took part in another health program in 2002 . Roe submitted his resignation as part of a union strategy in 1999, but quickly reconsidered and withdrew his resignation, saying it was like "drinking Kool-Aid at a Jim Jones picnic"; his decision proved fortunate, as all submitted resignations were eventually accepted by Major League Baseball. He retired in 2002.
Roe was the home plate umpire on June 27, 1987 when Mark McGwire had the first three-home run game of his career, and was the second base umpire on September 14 of the same year when Cal Ripken, Jr. ended his record streak of 8,243 consecutive innings played. Roe was behind the plate for the final game at Tiger Stadium.
- "In Career Call, Ump Plays It Safe". Knight Ridder/Tribune News Service. August 2, 1999.
- "Umpire Takes Leave". The New York Times. May 7, 1996. pp. B10.
- Dittmar, Joseph J. (1990). Baseball's Benchmark Boxscores. Jefferson, NC: McFarland & Co. pp. 202–204. ISBN 0-89950-488-4.
- Gildea, William. "Detroit Says Goodbye To Landmark -- Tiger Stadium, Detroit's 87- Year-Old Baseball Park, Was Honored Yesterday As The Tigers Played Their Final Game There.". The Seattle Times. Retrieved 12 May 2012.