BOSTON — Red Sox manager John Farrell went ballistic Saturday night in the bottom of the sixth inning at Fenway Park in a 6-3 loss, arguing a balk call that led to a run for the Angels and promptly, Farrell’s ejection.
Third-base umpire Bill Miller, the crew chief, called a balk on Fernando Abad with the Sox trailing 4-1 in the seventh. Cameron Maybin scored from third on the call.
At nearly the same moment as the call — and as Farrell contended, before the balk call was made — home-plate umpire Ryan Blakney called time.
"Time was clearly called before the balk was called," Farrell said. "I'm sure once they look at the video, they'll see time was called well in advance of the balk called, even to the point where Fernando was off the rubber before the balk was called, following time called at home plate.
“In my view, obviously not seeing the rest of the game from the dugout, I strongly disagreed, and time was clearly called before the balk was called."
Dustin Pedroia was among the first to run in and argue the balk call was wrong.
Farrell asked for the umpires to convene and they did, but the decision was not reversed. The Sox skipper and Miller had spit flying in each other’s face as Farrell unloaded in close quarters for his first ejection of 2017.
“When he came to me and we discussed it, we got together as a crew and Ryan told us what he had,” Miller told pool reporter Ken Powtak of the AP. “We went back to John and told him the balk happened before time was called. John didn’t accept that answer and he was quite adamant that time had been called first and therefore the balk should have been nullified.
“After that he just decided to argue and poked me in the chest. That’s why he was ejected.”
Farrell has some history with Miller, who has ejected Farrell three times — more than any other umpire.
On May 17, 2016, in Kansas City, Farrell was tossed by Miller from the dugout because of a balls and strikes argument.
Farrell and Miller also got into it when Farrell was managing the Blue Jays, on another balls and strikes issue. In the ninth inning of that May 15, 2012 game, Brett Lawrie spiked his helmet and it hit Miller.