Orioles' Kevin Gausman, Adam Jones ejected from 4-2 loss to Red Sox

The threat of conflict between the Orioles and Boston Red Sox on Wednesday night played out in the silliest possible way for the Orioles in a 4-2 loss at Fenway Park.

Orioles starter Kevin Gausman faced just five batters before home plate umpire Sam Holbrook ejected him from Wednesday night's game against the Boston Red Sox for hitting Xander Bogaerts with a breaking ball in the second inning.


Later, center fielder Adam Jones joined Gausman in the clubhouse early after Holbrook tossed him for barking back toward the plate on his way back to the dugout after a fifth-inning strikeout.

The episodes underlined how risky the interference by Major League Baseball that occurred Wednesday, in an effort to quell a rivalry that was starting to become more dangerous by the game, proved to be.


Instead, the zero-tolerance approach had the exact opposite effect of MLB's intervention. Rather than having the best players on the field and garnering attention for their talents, the Orioles were without their Opening Day starter and went to their bullpen in the second inning.

"Just given the situation and the tension between the two clubs and all the stuff that's gone over the past few weeks, we're all on high alert with anything," Holbrook said in a statement made to a pool reporter in lieu of taking questions. "I know that the ball was a curveball, but it hit him square in the back and just making a split decision at that point right there, there needs to be an end to this stuff, and I felt like an ejection was the right thing to do at that time, and that's what we did. Thankfully, we didn't have any more problems the rest of the game."

The Orioles might disagree. Gausman, who hit Bogaerts with a 77 mph curveball, was apoplectic after Holbrook's decision. His frustration after was compounded by the history between the teams, including the notion that Boston left-hander Chris Sale threw at Orioles third baseman Manny Machado intentionally Tuesday night.

"That's what I told him right away — you're screwing our bullpen," Gausman said.

At first, Gausman said he didn't even know who had been ejected.

He said: "To throw me out in that situation after what Sale did yesterday, throwing 98 behind a guy — on purpose, everybody knew it — and you're going to throw me out for hitting a guy on a curveball? In the second inning? I mean, it's pretty bush league."

Regarding Gausman's, Orioles manager Buck Showalter said he "really wasn't given much explanation."

"It's obviously surprising," Showalter said. "I think anybody that knows baseball knows he's not trying to hit him with a 77 mph curveball or changeup. I'm not sure what it was. Just makes you shake your head."

Showalter lamented the decision for both its short-term and long-term ramifications.

"It's frustrating to lose anybody. Sam's a good umpire. He's trying to do what he thinks is right. But obviously we're biased. We know the sincerity of the intent. Obviously, he's not trying to hit anybody."

On Jones' ejection, Showalter said Holbrook "just didn't like something he said as he was walking away to go back to the dugout."

Catcher Caleb Joseph, who called the ejection of Gausman at that point in the game "malarkey," tried to put it all in perspective.


"I guarantee if you go ask Xander Bogaerts if he thought Kevin Gausman was throwing at him on purpose, he would say no," Joseph said. "So of course, I really truly believe that Sam would say he missed it. Now at that point, you have to just play the game. What's done is done. You have to move on, you have to play the game. We didn't lose the game because Kevin got thrown out. We lost the game because we gave up three runs in the third inning."

Bleier wears it: Left-hander Richard Bleier had to take the ball with little warning, and allowed an early run before settling in. Bogaerts, who was on first base after Gausman hit him, scored on an RBI single by third baseman Josh Rutledge.

Bleier allowed three runs — one earned — in four innings, marking his first appearance for the Orioles. Ubaldo Jiménez, who was scheduled to be Thursday night's starter, relieved him in the sixth inning. Jiménez walked three but allowed only one hit and struck out two in three innings of scoreless relief.

The Orioles will need to add a starter for the series finale at Fenway Park.

"We have the contingency in place," Showalter said. "We knew Ubaldo could give us one [inning] last night. He only threw 67 pitches last time out. He had a real light workday. Can't say enough about Richard and Ubaldo tonight in a time of need. Really stepped forward, and actually gave us a chance to get back in there, but their pitching was good again."

A little comeback: Trailing 4-0 in the sixth inning, the Orioles chased Boston starter Drew Pomeranz and scored a pair of runs to keep the game interesting. Designated hitter Mark Trumbo walked to open the inning, went to third on a ground-rule double by second baseman Jonathan Schoop, and scored on a sacrifice fly by left fielder Trey Mancini.

Schoop scored on an RBI single by shortstop J.J. Hardy for the team's second run.

Bottom's up: The lower half of the Orioles lineup proved to be the most productive part of the order Wednesday.

Hardy and Mancini each had two hits, with Mancini driving in a run. Catcher Caleb Joseph added a base hit, and leadoff man Joey Rickard had two hits in the loss.

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