Boston Red Sox designated hitter David Ortiz was reprimanded by Joe Torre, MLB’s executive vice president for baseball operations, on Friday for yelling and gesturing toward the press box at the official scorer after his sharp grounder to first in the seventh inning of Wednesday’s win over the Minnesota Twins was ruled an error.
The league released a statement regarding the incident. It is unknown whether Ortiz was fined.
“Official scorers have a job to do, and by their very nature, their decisions don’t make everyone happy,” Torre said. “But everyone in our game deserves respect. I hope that David will meet that standard going forward, because I don’t share the same views that he expressed.
“Official scorers should never give any benefit of the doubt to the home team. We want their best judgment, based on the rules. We have a process to review the decisions that our scorers make. Even when there are inevitable disagreements, we expect everybody to act professionally and respect the game and the integrity of our scorers.”
The 38-year-old Ortiz, who homered in his next at-bat to tie the game in the 10th inning, said after the game he believes official scorers at home are “supposed to have your back … and it never happens.”
“It’s always like that,” he added. “I’ve been here for more than a decade and the scorekeepers here [at Fenway Park] are always horrible. This is home, man.
“I’ve got to make it clear. It’s not my first rodeo, man. You know how hard it is to get a hit, man?”
Ortiz’s sharp two-hopper knocked off Joe Mauer’s glove and bounced a few feet from the first baseman, who couldn’t recover in time to get the out. The official scorer, Bob Kelly, charged Mauer with an error after viewing the replay, and when the inning ended, Ortiz shouted up toward the press box, making a thumbs-down motion several times.
The nine-time All-Star is hitting .245 with 16 homers and 43 RBIs entering Friday’s game in Oakland but is hitting only .188 in June.
Mauer is in his first season as a full-time first baseman, but he is sure-handed, as the play was his first error of the season.