Jonathan Papelbon lost the lead and then lost his cool.
The closer made a lewd gesture to fans and was ejected after giving up four runs in the ninth inning of the Philadelphia Phillies’ 5-4 loss to the Miami Marlins on Sunday.
Papelbon grabbed his crotch as he walked to the dugout and was ejected by umpire Joe West. He jogged out of the dugout and got into a face-to-face argument with West, who grasped the pitcher’s jersey to hold him off, and Papelbon then argued with first base umpire Marty Foster. Papelbon threw a cup of liquid on the field before leaving the dugout.
“I told him ‘You’ve got to go,’ ” West said. “And then he charged out of the dugout and his head bumped into my hat. And I grabbed him and I said, ‘Get off of me.’
“The whole thing started because the fans booed him and he made an obscene gesture. He had no business doing that. He’s got to be more professional than that. And that’s why he was ejected.”
Papelbon denied gesturing lewdly toward fans and said boos had no impact on him.
“This is baseball,” Papelbon said. “I had to make an adjustment and I did it and by no means am I directing anything at any fans. ... When I’m out there and in the moment, the fans are irrelevant to me. I don’t see them. I don’t hear them. To me, this is pretty stupid, to be totally honest with you.
“They pay money, they want to see a good game and they have the right to boo and do whatever they want to do, but when an umpire gets caught up in that and starts trying to look for extra things he may think are going on — just umpire the game.”
Papelbon (2-3), who had converted 14 consecutive save opportunities since July 22, entered the game against Miami with a 4-1 lead. Five of the first six batters he faced reached base, giving up Jarrod Saltalamacchia’s double, Kike Hernandez’s walk, Adeiny Hechavarria’s infield single, Jordany Valdespin’s run-scoring groundout, Christian Yelich’s run-scoring infield single and pinch-hitter Justin Bour’s tying single.
After Casey McGehee struck out, Papelbon bounced a wild pitch past catcher Carlos Ruiz and Yelich scored the go-ahead run. Papelbon retired Marcell Ozuna on an inning-ending groundout.
Papelbon blew a save for the fourth time in 41 chances this season. He had been 18 for 18 in career save chances against the Marlins.
Red Sox’s David Ortiz leaves game because of family emergency
Boston Red Sox slugger David Ortiz left the ballpark at Kansas City early because of a family emergency, Manager John Farrell said.
“He got called away from this game,” Farrell said. “There was a family emergency that he had to attend to and he jumped on a flight late this afternoon. He should catch up with us in Pittsburgh.”
The Red Sox open a three-game series with the Pirates on Tuesday.