Major League Baseball officials made it clear on Wednesday they were growing tired of the on-going Orioles-Red Sox feud.
That became evident very quickly during Wednesday’s game when Orioles right-hander Kevin Gausman was ejected in the second inning after hitting Boston’s Xander Bogaerts with a 77-mph slider.
Home-plate umpire Sam Holbrook wasted no time sending Gausman to the showers despite what appeared to be a harmless pitch that simply got away from Gausman. Explanation and common sense be damned, the edict from the league was to douse any embers of tension quickly, and that’s exactly what Holbrook did.
The only anger stemming from the pitch was from the Orioles, who were none too pleased to lose their starter in the second inning. Boston would go on to cash Bogaerts in to take the early lead. They added three more runs against replacement Richard Bleier in the fourth inning and then held on to win 4-2. Gausman ended up taking the loss.
The ejection definitely came across as a knee jerk reaction by Holbrook. The intensity surrounding the on-going Orioles-Red Sox feud has been all over the place the last two weeks. After reaching a fever pitch on Tuesday though, leading to Manny Machado’s epic postgame rant on the Red Sox organization, things appeared relatively calm at the beginning of Wednesday’s game.
Short of Holbrook ejecting Adam Jones in the fifth inning for arguing a questionable strikeout, the game remained calm throughout. That indicates the teams got the league’s message. However, the league and the umpires, Holbrook in particular, weren’t going to take any chances. They put their stamp of authority on this game with hopes of ending this long-running feud.
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