Boston Red Sox slugger David Oriz was fined by the MLB on April 21 and suspended for one game for bumping an umpire during a heated exchange over a check swing called a strike during last weekend’s Boston series against the Orioles in Fenway Park, according to an Associated Press report carried by MSN. After hearing about the suspension, the designated hitter said he doesn’t recall bumping the ump and that he plans on appealing the MLB suspension.
Ortiz lost his cool in the fifth inning of Sunday’s game in Boston. He was at bat and thought he successfully checked his swing on a 1-1 pitch delivered by the Baltimore pitcher. Orioles’ catcher Caleb Joseph motioned to third base ump Jerry Meals for the call who signaled a strike with his outstretched arms.
Ortiz started mouthing off at Meals who stretched his arms out again and eventually headed toward home plate. But it was Ortiz’s interaction with the home plate umpire, John Tumpane, that ultimately got the short tempered batter tossed from the game. It ended calmly enough by Ortiz’s standards, with the slugger throwing his bat to the ground and then tossing his helmet as he went into the clubhouse.
“That was kind of a weird situation, where I’m arguing with the third-base umpire and the home-plate umpire is the one who was kicking me out of the game,” said Ortiz. “But whatever. I’m just appealing it, and I’m going to go from there.” ~ MLB.com
Ortiz won’t have to serve his suspension or pay his fine until the appeals process has reached a conclusion either way. MSN quoted the temperamental slugger as saying “They do what they’ve got to do. It’s part of the game. They ain’t perfect.”
Something about playing against Baltimore has a way of bringing out the worst in Ortiz. In July 2013 he totally destroyed two of the Orioles’ dugout telephones with his bat, according to Fox Sports.
After having the first three pitches in the seventh inning thrown against him in that game called balls, Ortiz flipped his bat away and stepped out of the batter’s box with the thought of taking first base; but he left the batter’s box before the fourth pitch even reached the Orioles’ catcher. That pitch probably would have been ball four. But for his disrespect to both the Orioles’ pitcher and the umpire behind the plate, umpire Tim Timmons called that fourth pitch a strike.
Ortiz ended up striking out altogether on the next two pitches, both sliders. Following his walk of shame back to the Red Sox’s dugout, Ortiz started throwing random equipment in the direction of umpire Tim Timmons and took his frustration out on some innocent telephones. For more on Ortiz getting suspended, see the video accompanying this article.