Washington Nationals manager Dave Martinez was in no mood for any kind of call he thought was bad, but unfortunately during Thursday’s game against the Arizona Diamondbacks, it was too much.
The ordeal began when Martinez was upset with a third strike called to batter CJ Abrams, which ended the fourth inning in a close game. The replay of the pitch showed that he was low. Washington was down 2-1 with runners on first and second when Abrams was hit.
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Martinez then became upset when Jake Irvin’s pitch to Carson Kelly in the fifth inning was called a ball. Plate umpire Doug Eddings appeared to respond to Martinez’s yells from the dugout. The manager came out to argue, but returned to the bench. On his way back, Martinez yelled, «Get it right!» Eddings responded by taking him out of the game, and that’s when Martinez blew up.
Martinez kicked the dirt off the plate and went to his knees and looked into the Eddings strike zone to illustrate his point. Lou Piniella would be proud.
«I’m going to protect my players, and that’s it,» Martinez said. «At that point, it’s crucial. He takes a pitch and does a good job, and maybe he’ll get the next pitch. Who knows? Maybe he’ll get a hit and we’ll be back in the ballgame. It’s just a tough situation.» .»
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Washington lost the game, 5-3.
Martinez said he was trying to protect Abrams, who struck out looking three times.
«I’m more worried about him because he’s doing everything right,» he added. «That’s what turned me on. I yelled a little bit there beforehand, and when it was over, the next inning started, and I was good. I was like, ‘Hey, let’s play baseball, we’re still in the game.’ Then, as you could see, things got a little heated and that led me to make a table on the field.»
The Nationals have lost 14 of 17.
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Martinez was the topic of conversation last week when he brought photographic evidence to a news conference to argue that a Houston Astros player was off the baseline.
Associated Press contributed to this report.