A lengthy rain delay and four-run deficit wasn’t enough to put out the fiery passion of Cubs catcher Willson Contreras.
“He's a passionate player,” manager David Ross said postgame. “I love his passion.”
Ross said that after restraining his catcher after an ejection in the ninth inning of Saturday’s 7-3 loss to the Diamondbacks.
The Cubs trailed Arizona with two outs in the ninth following a one hour, 39-minute delay. Home plate umpire Pat Hoberg called a borderline strike Jason Heyward that appeared to catch the outside corner.
Contreras disagreed with the call, voicing his displeasure from the Cubs dugout. It earned him an ejection, and Ross left the dugout for a chat with Hoberg.
Contreras wasn’t far behind in joining his manager out on the field. Ross did a 180 to hold Contreras back for 15 seconds before the backstop finally went back to the dugout.
If anybody understood where Contreras was coming from, it’s Ross, who spent 15 seasons in the big leagues.
“I've got thrown out of games too,” Ross said. “That's just part of the game when you're upset. He probably has as good a feel as anybody when you're catching about where the strike zone has been all day, he’s hitting. Things like that can play into that.
“I know he's passionate, I think passionate for a teammate there in a situation maybe he felt like a call or two didn’t go our way.
"I love everybody’s passion for the game and trying to win for sure.”