Bobby Valentine Takes Exception With Umpire Brian O’Nora, Will Middlebrooks Takes Diplomatic Route

Bobby Valentine Takes Exception With Umpire Brian O'Nora, Will Middlebrooks Takes Diplomatic RouteNEW YORK — Bobby Valentine has ripped umpiring crews on a few occasions this season. But those outspoken comments have also taken a toll on the Red Sox manager's paychecks.

So after Sunday's 3-2 win, Valentine stayed reserved when asked about home plate umpire Brian O'Nora's missed call. In the 10th inning, Red Sox third baseman Will Middlebrooks was plunked in the hand by Yankees pitcher David Robertson.

"It was pretty red," Valentine said of the mark on Middlebrooks' hand. "I mean, it wasn't a bee sting."

Although the 23-year-old sported a red welt, O'Nora declined to call a hit-by-pitch, insisting the ball hit Middlebrook's bat. Frustrated by the sequence, Valentine argued the ball and O'Nora sent him to the clubhouse.

Shortly after the game ended, Valentine briefly vented about his frustration with O'Nora's decision.

"He heard it," Valentine said. "That's what I take exception with. No one saw anything. He just heard it. What are you going to do? We won and I'm not going to say anything that's going to get me fined anymore."

During the exchange, Middlebrooks continually showed O'Nora the mark and pointed to his hand, but his efforts wound up being for naught. Still, despite the missed chance, Middlebrooks eventually collected a hit in the at-bat.

When prompted about his exchange with O'Nora, Middlebrooks also took the diplomatic route.

"It was just a seam mark where he got me," Middlebrooks said. "They said it hit the bat, so, I mean it's a tough call cause it happens really fast. I got a hit. I'll take that. I didn't really lose focus the whole time anyways, your adrenaline's going. It wasn't really that big of a deal."

It was Valentine's third ejection of the season. After the skipper said his piece, Red Sox pitcher Josh Beckett started barking at third base umpire Tom Haillion and was subsequently tossed.

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