What Astros' Justin Verlander had to say after his ejection - Chron

What Astros' Justin Verlander had to say after his ejection - Chron

Photo: Karen Warren/Staff Photographer

PHOTOS: Justin Verlander's ejection from Tuesday's game

Houston Astros starting pitcher Justin Verlander (35) being restrained by bench coach Joe Espada, and first base umpire Greg Gibson, yells at home plate umpire Pat Hoberg after Hoberg ejected him from the game during the sixth inning of an MLB baseball game at Minute Maid Park, Tuesday, August 27, 2019.

Browse through the photos above for more from Justin Verlander's ejection Tuesday night ...

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PHOTOS: Justin Verlander's ejection from Tuesday's game

Houston Astros starting pitcher Justin Verlander (35) being restrained by bench coach Joe Espada, and first base umpire Greg Gibson, yells at home plate

... more
Photo: Karen Warren/Staff Photographer

Justin Verlander's ejection in the sixth inning of the Astros' 15-1 win over the Rays on Tuesday night drew plenty of attention because of the odd circumstances.

After giving up a double to Tommy Pham a pitch after Verlander thought he had struck out Pham, the veteran yelled twice at home plate umpire Pat Hoberg before walking behind the mound and turning his back to the plate. That's when Hoberg tossed Verlander.

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When Verlander argued the ejection and bench coach Joe Espada held the pitcher back, Hoberg appeared - if you're reading lips - to tell Verlander, "You can't talk to me like that."

After the game, Verlander said he disagreed with the ejection, but admitted he didn't use the best choice of words.

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"As the play was developing, I kind of told him I thought it was a strike, he told me he throught it was a ball," Verlander said. "We kind of went back and forth for just a little bit. I turned my back and expressed one more time that I didn't think it was outside. I probably could have had better language when I said that. But I'm turning my back to the situation, and I'm just trying to vent at this point. I never called (Hoberg) a name. I never said anything egregious toward him. I just expressed my displeasure with the call on the field. Unfortunately, he made the decision to (eject) me. I don't think it was the right call, personally. ... Maybe a little bit of an overreaction on both sides."

Although Verlander took part of the blame for the situation, he didn't think Hoberg handled his end properly.

"I understand these guys are humans too; they're back there doing their best job, but I think they're taught along the way to try to not escalate the situation, to de-escalate the situation," Verlander said. "Clearly, I was just venting my last little piece and turned my back. I didn't even know he had ejected me. I think everyone could have handled the situation a little bit better. I think those guys are supposed to be mediators in stuff like that and he was not."


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