It’s been quite the week for Gabe Kapler and umpires.
The Phillies manager was ejected Tuesday night in the sixth inning by home-plate umpire Joe West. It was Kapler’s second ejection in four games after going 236 games without ever being tossed.
Kapler and everyone else in the Phillies dugout was upset that West issued warnings to both teams after Mets reliever Wilmer Font beaned Scott Kingery in the shoulder with a fastball. The two previous batters – Maikel Franco and Brad Miller – homered off Font to put the Phillies ahead.
“I felt fairly emotional seeing the ball go near Scott’s face. I had an instant reaction to that,” Kapler said. “And then when we were warned, I recognized that we were put in a tough spot, right? Our relievers coming into the game to win the game, I felt like it was going to put us at a disadvantage throwing up and in. The umpires have a job to do. I understand that they have to keep the peace in that situation. So I get it. But it was just upsetting because I felt like we were at a disadvantage. It’s that simple.”
West ejected Kapler almost as soon as the manager left the dugout to air his grievance, but that didn’t stop Kapler from arguing. It is against the rules to leave the dugout to argue a warning. West warned Kapler, told him to return to the dugout, and then ejected him.
Kapler was ejected on Saturday after arguing that Kingery had not swung at a pitch that hit his hand. Kapler argued for a bit with home-plate umpire Chris Guccione before he was tossed. He then kicked dirt on Guccione and crew-chief Mike Everitt before storming back to the dugout. At least, West’s pants didn’t get a dusting.
“I wanted to get an explanation,” Kapler said. “In his mind, we shouldn’t have gotten that explanation. We don’t always see it the same way. It’s understandable.”