(BaseballStL) – For the first time in his career, Peter Bourjos was ejected from Friday night’s game against the Atlanta Braves in the fourth inning.
Bourjos struck out twice, one called and one swinging, and seemed to disagree with home plate umpire Sean Barber’s strike zone. On the way back to the dugout, Bourjos exchanged words with Barber, then appeared to walk back towards the dugout when the umpire tossed the center fielder from the game.
“Probably the most frustrating part of it was watching my player get thrown out of the game when he’s walking away,” said manager Mike Matheny, who was also ejected, following the game, “It seemed like [Barber] told him that was enough, Peter stopped and started to go and he was tossed.”
This was Matheny’s seventh career ejection as a manager. After the game, Matheny praised Bourjos’ high emotions.
“I love to see the fire and fight that Peter showed there,” he said, “frustrated and knew that a couple of pitches didn’t get called to what he thought was the strike zone in big situations.”
“You can’t take the emotion out of these guys. I had been able to see a couple of pitches myself and was just as frustrated as Peter and the rest of our bench.”
The first time Bourjos was called out on strikes, the Redbirds had runners on second and third with one out. The second time Allen Craig had just scored on a wild pitch to tie the game. Then Jhonny Peralta walked and stole second, giving Bourjos a chance to push across another runner in scoring position.
Jon Jay took over for Bourjos in center field and went O for 1 with a walk.