Mariners' Broxton gets 2-game suspension
Outfielder, ejected Monday for throwing equipment, elects to appeal
SEATTLE -- Mariners outfielder Keon Broxton has received a two-game suspension and an undisclosed fine after hitting home plate umpire Manny Gonzalez with a batting glove after being called out on strikes in Monday’s 5-4 loss to the Yankees, but is appealing the suspension.
The discipline was handed down by Joe Torre, the Chief Baseball Officer for Major League Baseball, after Broxton was ejected by Gonzalez following the second-inning incident.
Broxton’s suspension had been scheduled to begin on Tuesday, but his appeal will delay that until the process is completed.
Broxton took responsibility for the incident and said he intended to apologize personally to Gonzalez, but acknowledged he was surprised at the suspension.
“I was thinking a fine, but a two-game suspension is definitely a shock,” he said. "I’m going to do whatever I can to appeal it and see what happens. But I’m definitely shocked.”
The 29-year-old defensive standout has struggled at the plate in his month with the Mariners since being claimed off waivers from the Orioles and unleashed some of his frustration after being called for a third strike on a pitch on the outside of the plate on a 93-mph fastball from J.A. Happ.
After throwing aside his bat and knocking his batting helmet backward off his head, he tossed one of his batting gloves over his shoulder and it glanced off Gonzalez’s face. That led to an immediate ejection, the first of Broxton’s five-year MLB career.
Broxton was as surprised as anyone that the glove hit Gonzalez.
“I had no idea,” he said. “I turned around and he told me it him in the face. I was like, ‘Oh man, I wasn’t even looking at you. I didn’t know.’ It was a total accident. It is what it is. That’s what they came back with, so it’s their decision.”
Broxton, who is batting .136 with two home runs and five RBIs in 19 games for Seattle, was not in the lineup for Tuesday night’s game, but will be available until his appeal is heard.
“It was an accident,” Mariners manager Scott Servais said. “I don’t think Keon meant to do it. When I went out to talk to the umpire, he realized it was an accident. But I didn’t know it hit him in the face until the umpire told me.”
For Broxton, the issue wound up largely being a matter of bad luck.
“It was crazy,” Servais said. “He could throw that batting glove a thousand times and never hit that guy. It just happened. It’s not condoning what he did. You shouldn’t do those things. But it was kind of a freak deal.”