Remember when Jonathan Papelbon said that Philadelphia fans know the game of baseball a little better than Boston fans?
Maybe there was something to that.
Sunday afternoon in Philadelphia, our old friend was booed by Phillies fans after he blew a save opportunity against the Marlins when he gave up four runs in the ninth inning in a 5-4 loss to Miami.
Papelbon responded by making a most obscene gesture directly at fans while on his way to the Philly dugout: the crotch grab.
Umpire Joe West immediately walked over to the Phillies dugout and ejected Papelbon. Next thing you know, West and Papelbon had to be separated before the former Red Sox closer left the field.
Papelbon naturally denied making any gesture toward the best fans in baseball, telling reporters he simply “had to make adjustment.”
”This is baseball,” Papelbon told reporters at Citizens Bank Park. ”I had to make an adjustment and I did it and by no means am I directing anything at any fans. When I’m out there and in the moment, the fans are irrelevant to me. I don’t see them. I don’t hear them. To me, this is pretty stupid, to be totally honest with you.
”They pay money, they want to see a good game and they have the right to boo and do whatever they want to do, but when an umpire gets caught up in that and starts trying to look for extra things he may think are going on — just umpire the game… I think Joe [West] took it to a different level.”
West didn’t see it Paps way at all.
”I told him `You’ve got to go,”’ West said to reporters. ”And then he charged out of the dugout and his head bumped into my hat. And I grabbed him and I said, `Get off of me.’
”The whole thing started because the fans booed him and he made an obscene gesture. He had no business doing that. He’s got to be more professional than that. And that’s why he was ejected.”
You may remember Papelbon singing the praises of Philly fans back in 2012 after he left the Red Sox to sign with the Philadelphia.
“The Philly fans tend to know the game a little better,” Papelbon said on 94WIP’s “Angelo Cataldi and The Morning Team.” “Being in the National League, you know, the way the game is played.”