Phillies closer Jonathan Papelbon was less than pleased with the work of home plate umpire D.J. Reyburn following Monday night’s 4-3 loss to the Dodgers.
The founding member of Cobra Kai came on in the ninth with the scored tied 3-3 and promptly served up a lead-off triple to Dee Gordon, followed by an RBI single off the bat of Elian Herrera that proved to be the game-winning run. The problem is that Papelbon thought he had Gordon struck out, so he made an attempt to talk to Reyburn after the inning, but the engaging ump had zero interest in chatting. Reyburn had already tossed Don Mattingly and bench coach Trey Hillman earlier in the game.
Unless Papelbon was showing him up — which if he had, he would’ve been tossed rather quickly — it’s unclear as to why the two couldn’t have a brief, reasonable discussion. It reeks of immaturity and a disproportionate air of self-importance. NBA referees are almost always willing to discuss a call so long as the player isn’t acting like Rasheed Wallace. But that’s a typical MLB umpire for you, as tender as filet mignon with a thirst for dramatics deeper than Meryl Streep.
After the game, Papelbon suggested that Reyburn go back to Triple-A, saying that when one doesn’t do their job, they get demoted or fired.