BALTIMORE -- Both Red Sox first baseman Adrian Gonzalez and manager Bobby Valentine were ejected by home plate umpire Mike Everitt in the eighth inning of the Sox' game against the Orioles Wednesday night at Camden Yards.
Gonzalez was first to be tossed, having complained about a quick-pitch by Baltimore reliever Pedro Strop on the way back to the dugout after grounding out to second. After Everitt threw out the first baseman, Valentine then came on the field to continue the argument, ultimately being ejected after making a motion to the umpire.
"My problem with that is that they all interpret their own way," Gonzalez said. "Frankie [Morales] does it earlier in the year and they call it a ball. When I talked to the umpire that day they said the hitter wasn't ready to hit. That's what we base it on. I wasn't ready to hit. That's what I went back to tell Mike. I wasn't ready to hit. There needs to be a universal interpretation of it. It can't be up to each individual umpire's discretion. The rule needs to be stated better because obviously I wasn't even set. I was just sitting there waiting for him to come set so I can get into my stance. We're trying to win games. I'm the leadoff hitter, down two runs, trying to get on base and that at-bat gets taken away from me.
"As I went back I just said I wasn't ready to hit. Don't take the at-bat away from me. And then as I got back out of frustration and everything I just said, 'Mikey, you stink.' Maybe I shouldn't have said that, but at the end of day my job was to get on base, try to create a rally, get something started and that was taken away from me."
For Gonzalez, it was his second career ejection, while it marked the 41st time in Valentine's career he had been thrown out. The Red Sox' manager has been ejected four times this season.
“The reason they don’t have the quick-pitch is because it’s dangerous," Valentine said. "It’s been allowed, I don’t know how long now. My first time I’ve really seen it being over-used. If the hitter is not ready and the ball’s at his head, he’s not going to get out of the way. That’s why they have the rule in the book. I guess the hitter has to step out or drop his bat or something but with two strikes, you’re going to leave it up to the umpire to call you on strike three so you’re playing survival.”
Valentine later added, "There’s about seven guys in this league that do it. I’ve seen it called it a ball a few times too, a no pitch, when the umpire determined that the hitter wasn’t ready. If the hitter’s not ready, it’s a ball. Automatic.”
The Red Sox were trailing, 5-3, with one out in the eighth at the time of the ejections.
For more Red Sox news, go to the team page at weei.com/redsox.
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