PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Jonathan Papelbon and Philadelphia just don’t like each other. It’s that simple.
A midst a chorus of boos after blowing a three-run lead for the Phillies on Sunday, closer Papelbon made a lewd gesture seemingly towards the fans. After finally getting out of the ninth inning, not before giving the opposing Marlins the lead, ‘Pap’ grabbed his groin area while walking towards the dugout directed towards the booing Phillies fans.
Second-base umpire Joe West saw the gesture and ejected Papelbon, who denies it ever happened.
“Ryno [Ryne Sandberg] went and talked to him and [West] said that I did an inappropriate gesture and something about grabbing myself,” Papelbon said. “And Ryno looked at me he said, ‘I have no idea what he’s talking about.’ I mean this is baseball, I had to make an adjustment and I did it.”
Video: Papelbon ejected
As for the fans, Papelbon says they have no impact on him when he’s in the game.
“By no means was I directing anything at any fans. I mean, I’ve got a four- and five-year-old son and daughter, I’m not out here to be doing inappropriate things. I mean, come on, this is baseball, it’s what we do. Go look at the game and see how many people do that just in today’s game,” Papelbon said.
“I don’t even hear the fans out there,” Papelbon said. “The fans, when I’m out there and I’m in the moment, the fans are irrelevant to me. I don’t even see them, I don’t even hear them.”
The Phillies were unable to score in the bottom half of the ninth, and lost 5-4 to the Marlins dropping to 69-80 on the season. For Papelbon, it was only his fourth blown save of the season. In 64.1 innings pitched this season, ‘Pap’ has 37 saves (8th most in MLB), 61 strike outs, a 2.10 ERA, and a 0.90 WHIP. It seems like his infuriating personality is overshadowing that.
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