Jon Blau, of www.mlb.com reports that both Mets manager Jerry Manuel and center fielder Carlos Beltran found themselves out of Tuesday night's game vs. the Mariners after a balls-and-strikes argument with home-plate umpire Brian Runge in the fourth inning.
(Runge baited Beltran, and he should know better. His father, Paul, and grandfather, Ed, were both major league umpires.)
Shortly after the count moved to 0-2, with Runge sweeping up home plate, Manuel jetted to within inches of Runge's face and quickly started arguing with the ump. Replays of the ejection clearly showed Runge chest-bumping Manuel before the Mets skipper made his way back to the dugout.
(Hopefully, Runge baiting Beltran, and chest-bumping Manuel are taken into account, before fines and/or suspensions are doled out. Hooray for Manuel, for sticking up for his player. Manuel received a standing ovation from the Shea crowd, and SNY announcer Keith Hernandez loved that Manuel was ejected for sticking up for Beltran.)
Once Manuel was gone, Beltran picked up where his manager left off, having to be restrained by his teammates after he was also given the boot.
(Do you find it ironic that Beltran has been criticized for being too passive ? He’s one of the most mild-mannered guys on the team. When Manuel was first declared Randolph’s replacement, a criticism was that Manuel was too similar, a mellow, passive guy. Manuel had spunk tonight, the crowd loved it, I’m sure Beltran appreciated it, Mex loved it, and so did I.)
Marlon Anderson entered the game to replace Beltran, playing left field, which moved Endy Chavez to center, and Trot Nixon switched corner outfield spots by taking over in right.