Red Sox

Alex Verdugo upset with fan who threw a baseball at him during Saturday’s Red Sox-Yankees game

“There’s no reason to be throwing stuff back onto the field ever."

Alex Verdugo exchanged words with fans at Yankee Stadium on Saturday after one of them threw a baseball at him. Adam Hunger/Getty Images

Red Sox outfielder Alex Verdugo wasn’t happy with one fan during Saturday’s 3-1 loss to the Yankees.

Prior to the start of the bottom of the sixth inning, Verdugo was hit by a baseball thrown by a fan in left field at Yankee Stadium, leading to a heated exchange between Verdugo and the fan.

Verdugo said the incident started when he tried to toss a baseball to a young Red Sox fan that instead ended up in a Yankees fan’s hands after warming up for the bottom of the sixth inning.

“I was going back to try to get ready for the pitch to be delivered and I hear, ‘Throw it back,’” Verdugo told reporters. “I’m in my stance getting ready and I take a peek, and as I look back, I see the ball heading down and then it hits me in my back.”

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Seconds after the ball was thrown at Verdugo, members of the umpiring crew went over to left field to assess the situation. Red Sox manager Alex Cora made his way over there shortly later and pulled his team from the field.

“I know my left fielder. I know Alex,” Cora said. “He needed time to breathe and to get his thoughts. It seemed like nobody was listening to me. You never know. What if he jumps the fence? What if he goes up there?”

The umpiring crew eventually ordered the Red Sox to get back on the field. Verdugo said that while he expects some competitive hostility with fans, throwing stuff at players should never happen.

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“I come to expect it when I’m out here, you know, the trash-talking, the bringing up family members, the having everybody chant, excuse my language, ‘(expletive) Verdugo’ and all these things,” Verdugo said. “I’m used to that. I don’t care. That’s cool.

“There’s just no reason to be throwing stuff back onto the field ever, you know, there really isn’t. Yeah, I lost my cool there for a second, I was pretty pissed, but having some time to think about it now and to calm down and relax, it is what it is.”

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Cora shared similar sentiments on the matter.

“This is just a game,” Cora said. “It’s a game. It’s not life and death and it’s not this drama, and the fact that people come to the ballpark and they decided to throw a baseball (at) one of the players, I was in shock that that happened.”

“It’s awful, embarrassing, unacceptable,” Yankees manager Aaron Boone added.

The fan who allegedly threw the ball at Verdugo was ejected from the game, the New York Post reported.

The Yankees hit two solo home runs in the sixth inning before the game was called due to rain in the seventh inning, giving New York its first win over Boston this season.

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