Jonathan Papelbon ejected from game for what Joe West thought was an obscene gesture

September 14, 2014 - 5:17 pm
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Jonathan Papelbon's uneasy relationship with Philadelphia fans was amped up Sunday. The Phillies closer was ejected by umpire Joe West after vigorously adjusting his cup on the way back to the dugout after blowing a three-run lead in the ninth inning against the Marlins. Papelbon executed the act while being showered with boos from the Citizens Bank Park crowd. After being ejected, Papelbon confronted West, going chest-to-chest with the veteran umpire until West ultimately grabbed the closer's jersey and ushered him away. (Click here for video of the Papelbon/West confrontation.) "I told him, 'You've got to go,' " West said. "And then he charged out of the dugout and his head bumped into my hat. And I grabbed him and 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." Following the game, Papelbon said he wasn't doing what West said he was doing. "This is baseball," he said. "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." Either way, the moment didn't help the reliever's relationship with his home fans. Remember, earlier this season Papelbon invited Phillies fans to boo him.
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