Ejection Inspection, Week 16: Yasmani Grandal of the Milwaukee Brewers Loses His Mind

Plus, the Philadelphia Phillies Suffer the Most Unjust Ejection of the Season

Yasmani Grandal
MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN - JULY 15: Yasmani Grandal #10 and manager Craig Counsell argue with umpire Jordan Baker after Grandal was ejected in the fifth inning against the Atlanta Braves at Miller Park on July 15, 2019 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)

Yasmani Grandal Loses His Mind

Welcome to Week 16 of Ejection Inspection! The premise and ground rules are detailed here. The condensed version: each ejection from the previous week (Thursday through Wednesday) is listed in a table. The author – a former player/coach/umpire – analyzes each ejection and assigns it an entertainment rating of one to five Weavers in honor of late Baltimore Orioles manager Earl Weaver. This week, a new leader took over the position of most unfair ejection. However, that was not the Ejection of the Week. That honor went to Milwaukee Brewers catcher Yasmani Grandal, who earned Four Weavers for his meltdown Monday night.

(For a list of every article in this series, click here.)

There were six ejections in Week 16 – one manager and five players.

Date Team Opp Inn. Name Pos Umpire Pos Reason
1 Sat 7/13 CIN @COL T9 Joey Votto 1B James Hoye HP Arguing balls/strikes
2 Mon 7/15 PHL LAD T8 Yacksel Rios P Doug Eddings HP Intentionally hitting a batter
3 Mon 7/15 MIL ATL B6 Yasmani Grandal C Jordan Baker HP Arguing balls/strikes
4 Tue 7/16 PHL LAD T9 Hector Neris P Chris Conroy HP Intentionally hitting a batter
5 Tue 7/16 PHL LAD T9 Gabe Kapler Mgr Chris Conroy HP Arguing ejection of player
6 Tue 7/16 KC CWS T9 Jorge Soler DH Tom Hallion HP Arguing balls/strikes

 

Joey Votto, Cincinnati Reds First Baseman

When

Saturday, July 13, at Colorado Rockies, top of the ninth

Umpire

James Hoye (HP)

Description

With a 2-2 count and his team leading 15-9, Votto took a breaking ball that looked to be wide of the plate. Hoye called strike three, irritating Votto in the process. Votto jawed at Hoye while beginning his walk back to his dugout. He took several steps, chirping back over his shoulder the whole time. Hoye must have said something back to Votto, because Votto snapped back around and got in Hoye’s face again. Even though the next hitter – Eugenio Suarez – got between the two, Votto kept going, so Hoye chucked him.

Reds manager David Bell got Votto out of Hoye’s face and then began a lengthy, yet rather quiet, discussion. Surprisingly, Bell stayed in the game.

Understand the frustration?

To a small extent, yes. The pitch appeared to be outside, but Votto’s team was up by six in the top of the ninth. That just plain looks bad. Even the Reds color commentator criticized Votto’s actions.

Was the ejection justified?

Yes. Arguing balls and strikes is grounds for immediate ejection.

Entertainment Rating

Two Weavers. There was little memorable about the actual ejection other than how dumb it was for Votto to make a big deal out of it in the first place. However, when watching the ejection again, a Coors Field usher is visible directly above Hoye’s head. The look on his face during the entire sequence is priceless. That made the score two instead of one.

 

Yacksel Rios, Philadelphia Phillies Pitcher

When

Monday, July 15, vs. Los Angeles Dodgers, top of the eighth

Umpire

Doug Eddings (HP)

Description

After a two-run home run by Dodgers center fielder Alex Verdugo extended the lead to 12-1, third baseman Justin Turner stepped to the plate. The first pitch from Rios to Turner was an overthrown slider that slipped. It hit Turner in the thigh. Eddings immediately tossed Rios, drawing instant protest from Turner. As Turner and Phillies catcher J.T. Realmuto pleaded with Eddings to keep Rios in the game, Eddings held his ground. Phillies manager Gabe Kapler charged out of the dugout to protest the ejection, but it fell on deaf ears as well. After a heated discussion, Kapler left the field without being ejected.

Understand the frustration?

Every player, coach, or manager was understandably frustrated at this travesty.

Was the ejection justified?

Absolutely not. This was comically unjust and has taken over the title of most unjust of the season. It was so bad that the opposing team was advocating for the pitcher. This author cannot remember ever seeing that happen before in 32 seasons of watching baseball – at any level.

Entertainment Rating

Two Weavers. It received a bonus point for the sheer sake of watching the Dodgers advocate for the opposing team’s pitcher.

 

Yasmani Grandal, Milwaukee Brewers Catcher

When

Monday, July 15th, vs. Atlanta Braves, bottom of the sixth

Umpire

Jordan Baker (HP)

Description

Yasmani Grandal started off the at-bat 3-0 then took a pitch at the knees and right down the middle for strike one. He then fouled off three straight tough pitches. The next pitch was a filthy cutter just above the knees and right over the outside part of the plate. Grandal dropped his bat and started to trot to first. He stopped and yelled in argument when Baker rang him up. Grandal continued to bark as he came back to pick up his bat. The Milwaukee catcher did not stop as he trekked back to the dugout. Baker told him to stop, but Grandal turned around and said yet another thing after the warning. “GONE!” Baker yelled.

Grandal charged back and lost his mind. Counsell came out to keep Grandal from bumping Baker and succeeded. After a brief discussion, Counsell left the field. Grandal yelled, “You’re (bleeping) terrible!” twice before ducking into the clubhouse tunnel.

Understand the frustration?

Baker’s strike zone was perfect, but in Grandal’s mind, it wasn’t, so yes.

Was the ejection justified?

Big time. The only time between the strikeout and Grandal’s disappearance into the clubhouse tunnel that he wasn’t arguing was when Baker warned him.

Entertainment Rating

Four Weavers. Grandal looked completely foolish in his arguments, for one. Secondly, Baker’s glare at the dugout while licking his chops was hilarious. Thirdly, Baker is 6’7”, and watching him stay calm and stoic as he towered over the two fuming Brewers was beautiful. The coup de grace, however, came when Grandal yelled his parting words before entering the tunnel to the clubhouse.

 

Hector Neris, Philadelphia Phillies Pitcher
Gabe Kapler, Philadelphia Phillies Manager

When

Tuesday, July 16, vs. Los Angeles Dodgers, top of the ninth

Umpire

Chris Conroy (HP)

Description

Neris came into the game in the ninth protecting a 6-5 lead. He promptly ran into trouble, walking leadoff man Max Muncy then allowing a single to left by A.J. Pollock. After Corey Seager struck out swinging, Matt Beaty – pinch hitting for Austin Barnes – smacked a three-run home run to give the Dodgers an 8-6 lead. The second pitch to the subsequent hitter – David Freese – was an inside fastball near the neck. Freese turned his back and ducked as the pitch hit him high on the spine.

Freese fumed as he quickly walked to first. Conroy took off his mask and immediately dumped Neris, who threw up his hands in an unconvincing manner. Kapler charged out of the dugout and began to argue the ejection. When he (correctly) claimed in a profane manner that the umpires had messed up the night before, Conroy ran him, also.

Understand the frustration?

Given what had just happened, yes.

Was the ejection justified?

Without question. This was obviously intentional, and it was up near the head. Even the Phillies broadcasters said so. Furthermore, the ejection probably prevented an altercation. As far as Kapler’s ejection, it was also warranted. Bringing up the past the way he did is a quick way to get tossed.

Entertainment Rating

One Weaver. This was boring.

 

Jorge Soler, Kansas City Royals Designated Hitter

When

Tuesday, July 16, vs. Chicago White Sox, end of the eighth

Umpire

Tom Hallion (HP)

Description

On a full count with two outs, Soler took a breaking ball just above the knees and over the inside corner. Hallion called strike three. Soler yelled, spun toward Hallion, stood on home plate, and yelled twice more in Hallion’s face. Immediately, Hallion gave him the heave-ho. Soler left the field without further incident.

Understand the frustration?

This pitch was clearly a strike, and Soler probably noticed it immediately when he saw the film. He was probably more frustrated that he went hitless while his team won 11-0. That will cloud judgement on borderline pitches.

Was the ejection justified?

Yes. He threw a tantrum right in the umpire’s face.

Entertainment Rating

One Weaver. Nothing entertaining occurred. Furthermore, for a player to lose his mind over that pitch while his team is leading 11-0 is ludicrous.

 

Leaderboard

After 16 weeks, here are the leaders. Fight-related ejections are not counted toward the leaderboard.

Managers: Detroit Tigers manager Ron Gardenhire (seven), Bell (six)
Players: Tigers designated hitter Miguel Cabrera (two)
Team high: Reds (11), Tigers (nine), Royals (eight)
Team low: Cleveland Indians, Colorado Rockies, and Tampa Bay Rays (one each)
Umpire: Mike Estabrook (eight)

 

Look for Week 17 on Thursday, July 25th.

Evan Thompson played baseball as a youth and teenager. He also umpired between 1995 and 2004 and has coached at the high school level.

Main Photo
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