I guess I picked the wrong time during the Red Sox game last night to leave my parents' house and drive home. It appears I missed a few fireworks during the seventh inning. But the Red Sox had a comfortable 6-2 lead going into the seventh inning so everyone should be happy, right? Not so much...
The umpiring during this Sox-Orioles series has left a lot to be desired. If it annoys me as much as it does, I can only imagine how incensed the players must get. Multiple missed balls and strikes calls have marred the last few games. Kind of makes the idea of an electronic strike zone really attractive (right, dad?) That "strike zone" box they put up on the screen doesn't help matters much either—especially when a called ball was right down the middle. What the hell are these umps looking at?
In the not-so-happy seventh inning last night, David Ortiz took a high pitch on a 3-0 count and flipped the bat thinking it was ball four. The umpire called it a strike. Ortiz barked back, gesturing that the ball was high. But then Big Papi ended up striking out and that's when things took a turn for not-so-happy town. He continued to argue the earlier call even after he was back in the dugout.
Teammates and coaches sprang into action, restraining him from not only going back out after the umpire, but trying to calm his escalating anger. He was really pissed off. I will admit, it kind of makes you chuckle watching Dustin Pedroia and Shane Victorino wrangle Ortiz—who had towers over both by more than six inches.
But then Big Papi brought the bullpen phone into the situation. I'm not sure if that phone had done something to offend him earlier in the game, or if it was just an innocent bystander. Whatever the case, the poor phone took the brunt of the rage. Ortiz proceeded to smash the phone with a bat, sending shrapnel flying around the dugout. He's lucky no one got hurt. Pedroia was nearly impaled by phone shreds which could've been very bad.
Needless to say, Ortiz was swiftly ejected from the game and could possibly face suspension by the league. Maybe that's what he needs to remind him that tempers should be kept in check and destroying things in anger is not going to be tolerated by MLB. Sure it will be a significant loss for the team if he does miss a few games, but the success of the Red Sox this season has been due largely in part by the lack of drama. And they need to get that attitude back.
In case you missed it, like I did...
Thankfully, there was some good news last night—the Sox did win 7-3! Happy Birthday to me!