After he struck out in the second inning, Beltre was talking to Felix Hernandez in the Seattle dugout, playfully telling him in Spanish that would hit a home run his next time up. As the two went back and forth, Bellino somehow thought Beltre was speaking to him.
When Beltre told him twice that he wasn’t, he was tossed out.
“I couldn’t believe it,” Beltre said. “I never said anything to him. Nothing.”
Sox catcher Kevin Cash and Hernandez confirmed Beltre’s side of the story.
So because of a misunderstanding by a minor-league umpire who fills in for regular umpires who are on vacation, the Sox lost their No. 5 hitter and MVP candidate.
Crew chief Joe West said any comment would have to come from Major League Baseball.
UPDATE, 10:55 p.m.: Here is what Beltre said:
“I was talking BS to Felix. We had a little bet. He told me he was going to strike me out three times and I told him I was going to take him deep. He struck me out and I went to my position and he was talking smack to me.
“I was facing him and I Spanish I told him that in my next at-bat I was going to take him deep over the Monster. I heard the umpire talking to me and I turned around and said I was talking to [Hernandez] and he threw me out.
“I have no idea why he threw me out. I wasn’t even talking to him.
“It’s frustrating to have a rookie umpire doing something like that, especially with how important this game is for us. I’m not even facing him. I wasn’t talking to him. I was talking Spanish and he’s behind my back. So how can he take the initiative to take me out of the game in the second inning?
“I never got close to him. I was trying to find how why he would throw me out. He had no reason to throw me out. I don’t know why a rookie umpire would do that?”
Said Kevin Cash: “AB was talking to Felix in their dugout. Next thing I knew, the umpire threw him out. He was not talking to the umpire. I was shocked.”