Not showing respect to umpires is a fast way to get yourself tossed from a game, but this is ridiculous.
The home plate umpire of the Nationals and Mets game Saturday, Marty Foster, ejected Nats infielder Anthony Rendon for rolling his eyes after a strike-three call. Rendon was frustrated with the called strike to end the inning, threw his bat in disgust and started to take off his batting gloves and helmet, but this was about as tame an ejection as you’ll see.
For what it’s worth, it looked like a strike. While Rendon may not have been too respectful to Foster, it’s clear he took some exception to the way he responded as maybe two seconds passed before Rendon went from being called out on strikes to hitting the showers earlier than he was anticipating.
“Showing up” an umpire is one of the strangest things in baseball. It’s entirely up to the umpire to make that call, which seems a little ridiculous, especially when considering Rendon has never been ejected in his career and has almost zero history of arguing balls and strikes.
Tossing someone from a game if they’re arguing or talking back or they approach the umpire and make contact, but Rendon didn’t do any of that. Unless Rendon said some terrible stuff to Foster prior to that strike-three call, Foster just felt the need to abuse his power as an umpire and eject the veteran.
It was nice to see Nationals manager Davey Martinez earn his first career ejection in support of Rendon, but it would have been nicer if no one was tossed at all. If Foster was truly upset about Rendon’s behavior at the dish, he could have at least warned him before throwing him out.
Umpires have a tough job, and a lot of players abuse them, but Rendon did nothing wrong. That being said, Martinez kicking dirt all-around home plate might go down in GIF-history.