Laz Diaz and the New York Yankees didn’t exactly get along Monday night. Yankees manager Joe Girardi might know a good reason why.
In the eighth inning of a 1-1 game against the Los Angeles Angels, Angels pitcher Jered Weaver threw a pitch to Yankees hitter Brett Gardner on the lower half of the plate that was called a strike by Diaz, the home plate umpire.
The Yankees skipper took exception to the call, and Diaz’s retort set Girardi off.
“I mentioned to Laz in a respectful way that I thought the pitch was up to Kelly Johnson earlier in the game and he gave me the Mutombo,” Girardi told reporters, via ESPN.com. “I don’t appreciate that. I’m not a little kid. I don’t need to be scolded.”
Girardi, of course, was referring to the finger wag made famous by NBA shot-blocker Dikembe Mutombo. The manager stormed out of the dugout to confront Diaz for his antics and was immediately ejected.
Girardi completely lost his cool during the ensuing argument, berating Diaz for his snarky comeback by wagging his own finger in the umpire’s face and screaming, “Don’t do this to me!”
Unfortunately for New York, Diaz wasn’t done. Just a half inning later, the veteran umpire tossed Yankees reliever Shawn Kelley for arguing balls and strikes after Kelley had already been taken out of the game.
Thumbnail photo via Twitter/@nypostsports