BALTIMORE -- Red Sox manager John Farrell said he had not heard from MLB in the wake of David Ortiz’s ejection Saturday night, and reiterated that he still feels no further disciplinary action will be taken.
"Absolutely," Farrell said Sunday. “After watching the highlights, replay of it, probably more so."
Ortiz was ejected after obliterating a dugout phone with several ferocious swings of his bat in the seventh inning. Ortiz was infuriated that plate umpire Tim Timmons called a 3-and-0 pitch a strike, then made the same call on the next pitch, which Ortiz also felt was a ball. He wound up striking out on the next pitch, gesturing angrily to Timmons that the previous pitches had been high.
Ortiz was loudly booed Sunday each time he went to bat. He quieted the crowd when he hit a two-run home run, his 20th of the season, in the third inning. When he returned to the dugout, he playfully pretended he was going to attack the phone again.
Sunday morning, when Farrell came out for his pregame session, an empty vegetable can tied to a string was sitting on top of the phone. Subsequent investigation revealed the telephone repairmen to be Jonny Gomes and Ryan Dempster.
Ortiz said the 3-and-0 strike call “may have been the worst call of the year." He said what incensed him most was that Timmons insisted to him he made the correct call.
"When I'm walking away, I'm telling him he was acting like he was right about the call," Ortiz said. “No, he wasn't. He wasn't right. Don't be giving me that BS. If you miss it, tell me you missed it and I'll walk away. I don't have a problem with that.
“You're not perfect. You're human, you know what I'm saying. But don't act like you made the right call. It was ball four."
Ortiz is not shy about questioning ball-strike calls, and is often quite animated about it. But what was surprising is that Timmons, who probably could have ejected Ortiz for gesturing at the plate after striking out, threw him out when he was attacking the phone, not for anything he said to the umpire.
Outfielder Shane Victorino said he asked another member of the umpiring crew, Mike Winters, about that.
“I just think it was the way things went, equipment, pieces flying out of the dugout," Victorino said. “You hardly ever see an umpire toss a guy in the dugout for releasing frustration. I never saw a guy go in the dugout and release frustration and get tossed. The explanation from Winters is that pieces came flying out of the dugout. I said, ‘OK, I want to know for myself.’
“It’s the human element of the game. It happens."
There have been several calls the Sox have objected to this weekend. Friday night, Farrell argued to no avail that Orioles rookie Henry Urrutia had run inside the first-base “channel,” blocking Mike Napoli’s vision of a throw from pitcher John Lackey.
Saturday night, pitcher Ryan Dempster went to Timmons and asked about an 0-and-2 pitch to Manny Machado that Timmons called a ball, even as Machado headed back to the dugout, believing he had struck out. Dempster said Timmons told him he missed the call. "That disarms you," Dempster said.
Also Saturday, third-base umpire Laz Diaz raised his hands as if to call a ground ball by Jarrod Saltalamacchia foul, then reversed himself, the Orioles turning a force play.
And second-base umpire Winters ruled that Drew’s second home run was in play, leading to a bizarre sequence in which Drew eventually scored in a rundown. Umpires undertook a video review, and reversed the call to a home run.
“It’s been an interesting weekend," Farrell said.
Ortiz’s home run Sunday, an opposite-field liner to left field off Jason Hammel, gave him the 12th 20-homer season of his career, 11 coming with Boston. He is tied with Jim Rice and Dwight Evans for second on the Sox all-time list, behind Ted Williams’ 16.