Old friend Jonathan Papelbon became a little surly with the media during his final year in Boston. Now he’s gotten into a beef with a sports media veteran in Philadelphia.
The Phillies closer and longtime radio/TV commentator Howard Eskin, reportedly needed to be separated in the Phillies clubhouse before Saturday’s game against the Dodgers.
According to Macho Row, a Phillies blog, Ant Scaramuzzi — who reportedly works for the Phillies — tweeted that “Eskin and Papelbon just got into a heated verbal argument by the Phils dugout. Both had to be restrained.’’
The heated exchange may have been over this tweet by Eskin:
Here’s the background that led to the tweet: The 33-year-old Papelbon came under fire for being unavailable to close out a game against the Mets on Mother’s Day. The Phillies bullpen could not protect a three-run lead in the bottom of the ninth and the Phils lost the game 5-4 while Papelbon stayed on the bullpen after throwing just 21 pitches in the previous two games. Papelbon said he was sore all over and needed the day off.
Eskin seems to confirm the report of the scuffle:
Jacoby Ellsbury was also dragged into the mess as was Papelbon’s wife Ashley, who reponded to Eskin’s claim that Jonathan Papelbon could not pitch because he was hung over after going out with Ellsbury the night before.
@howardeskin I spent time with Kelsey & my daughter SaturDAY. No going out that night. Sorry u were misinformed. No hangovers.— Ashley Papelbon (@ashpapelbon58) May 16, 2014
Papelbon’s next save will No. 300 for his 10-year career.