Yankees manager Aaron Boone lit into umpire Nic Lentz on Friday night, putting on one of the best performances of a manager getting ejected that we’ve seen all season.
Major League Baseball certainly thought it was extraordinary as well, because the league served up a one-game suspension to Boone that will force him to sit out Sunday’s series finale against the Detroit Tigers.
What made Boone’s tirade worth a suspension?
For starters, Boone made contact with Lentz. That’s a big no-no in baseball, regardless of how slight or inadvertent it may have been. That led straight to Boone’s ejection and set the manager off in a rollicking one-way conversation with Lentz about his strike zone — in the midst of a no-hitter, no less.
Boone shuffled over to the plate, assumed the position of catcher and, in exaggerated fashion, showed the ump just how awful he perceived his strike zone to be.
Baseball fans everywhere couldn’t help but giggle.
Everywhere except the league offices, apparently. Boone will now enjoy a Sunday away from the ballpark.
Yankees getting stronger
After Boone was ejected on Friday, the Yankees rallied for a 7-5 victory over the Tigers, then kept themselves rolling with another 2-1 win on Saturday. Suddenly, what seemed like an American League East title that was all but gift-wrapped for the Boston Red Sox is slowly going back up for grabs.
The Yankees are now just 7.5 games back with six games left against the Red Sox.
If that weren’t enough to get fans in the Bronx excited for September, Boone recently told the media that superstar slugger Aaron Judge — currently sidelined with a fracture of the right wrist — is still on track to return to action before the end of the month.
Add that to the recent acquisition of outfielder Andrew McCutchen and it’s clear to see why Boone is wearing his heart on his sleeve down the stretch.
These Yankees have a chance to do some major damage in October and their manager is all in. Even if it means arguing over balls and strikes.
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