ARLINGTON, Texas -- Home plate umpire Wally Bell said that he ejected Minnesota Twins pitcher Scott Diamond in the third inning because he felt he was throwing at Josh Hamilton's head. Diamond's pitch ended up going behind Hamilton.
"Any time in an umpire's judgment that they go in the head area, we have to take care of business," Bell said. "I felt at the time that he had to be ejected for it."
The pitch to Hamilton -- the first one in the at-bat with one out in the inning -- came shortly after Texas Rangers starter Roy Oswalt hit Twins catcher Joe Mauer in the back on a 3-0 pitch in the top of the third. Oswalt said the ball got away from him.
"For some reason, I can’t keep the ball true on the left side," Oswalt said. "He’s been beating me away, away, away. I was trying to get him out in and just dropped my elbow. I don’t know the reason why the ball is coming back on the left side of the plate. I can keep it true on the right side. The left side I can’t really keep it true and I dropped my elbow and it kind of sailed on me."
Oswalt wasn't surprised that Diamond was ejected.
"If it would have been lower, it would have been warnings. I understand the situation," Oswalt said. "One of their guys got hit, so they are trying to throw at one of our guys. He may not have. You don’t ever know. I don’t know."
Oswalt was asked if he meant to hit Mauer.
"No. Truthfully, I can’t keep the ball on the left side of the plate," Oswalt said. "I don’t know what I’m doing. I threw a good pitch on 2-0 that actually stayed there. I told myself, ‘I can throw that same pitch and I can get him to swing at it and jam him.’ "
Mauer wasn't sure what was going on.
“I was pretty surprised,” Mauer said. “All I know is there was a base open, 3-0, and I almost got one in the neck. So that’s the way I saw it. I didn’t hear anything or get an explanation for it. What you guys saw is what I saw.”
Diamond said he felt the ejection was "a pretty quick trigger" and that he wasn't trying to throw at Hamilton's head.
"I was a little frustrated because I thought a warning would have been issued, but that’s the way it goes," Diamond said. "I was trying to work in on the pitch and it definitely got away from me. My control wasn’t as great tonight. I’m just glad nobody got hurt.”