Was he or wasn't he?
Roger Clemens was reportedly ejected from a youth league game
in Craig, Colo., Saturday after his ten-year-old son, Kacy, was called
out in a close play during a
10-and-under Triple Crown Sports tournament.
The future Hall of Famer was not with the Astros on the weekend, as his team allows him to
be away when he's not pitching.
Doug Hanson, the manager of the son's team, the Katy (Texas) Cowboys, said an umpire kicked Clemens out
because the Houston Astros pitcher spat a sunflower seed at him.
"All of a sudden, I hear him say, 'He's outta here!' " Hanson
said. "I asked him who, because I thought it was one of my coaches.
And then he says, 'Roger.'
"I couldn't believe it. I said to him, 'You just ejected Roger
Clemens?' and he said, 'Yeah.' "
But the manager also says Clemens didn't do anything wrong and was in
fact videotaping the game at the time of the incident. He says
Clemens told him he left after being told to leave because "it
wasn't worth it."
However, if you ask one of Clemens' agents, he says no one asked
Clemens to go. Agent Randy Hendricks says Clemens told him he was
signing autographs when the disputed call happened and didn't even
see the play.
"To his knowledge, no one ever asked him to
leave," Hendricks said Monday.
Still, Jim Carpenter, the field supervisor at the game, indicated that the umpire had, in fact, asked Clemens to leave, saying: "I supported the umpire's decision and [Clemens] respectfully left."
The episode began with Clemens sitting in his own chair, behind
a fence near the first base dugout, when Kacy was called out at
second base in the middle innings.
The second baseman made the tag -- "my son admitted he missed
him," the player's dad said -- and the Cowboys and their fans complained.
"It wasn't like he was shouting or came storming on the field,
like a Mike Piazza moment," Ron Stapp, whose son made the phantom
tag on Kacy Clemens on his steal attempt, said Monday.
Whichever version is true, Clemens
wound up watching the rest of game from his car, peering over a
fence as Kacy and the Cowboys lost to the Bakersfield
(Calif.) Curve 11-5.
Triple Crown national baseball director Sean Hardy would not
identify the ump who ejected Clemens, though he was described as being about 20 years old.
No matter what the story, one thing is certain: Clemens is set
to pitch Tuesday night when the Astros host Atlanta.