NEW YORK — Yankees manager Aaron Boone expected to be suspended following his profane rant at a rookie umpire and opted to serve his one-game ban against the Colorado Rockies on Friday night.
Boone aimed a memorable tirade at plate umpire Brennan Miller following his ejection during a doubleheader opener against Tampa Bay on Thursday. MLB executive Joe Torre announced Friday that Boone had been suspended one game and fined, neither of which surprised Boone, who acknowledged making contact with Miller with the bill of his cap.
"I figured I’d be getting a call at some point from Mr. Torre," he said. "And I did."
Boone was ejected in the second inning for arguing from the dugout with Miller, who had called a third strike on Brett Gardner. The rant was captured by television microphones, and Boone’s repeated reference to his hitters as "savages" in the batter’s box went viral and was being sold online on T-shirts before the game ended.
Tensions were running hot in New York’s dugout, where Gardner left dents in the roof by repeatedly slamming his bat into it. Boone said he sensed someone was going to be ejected and decided to make sure it was him instead of one of his players.
"Sometimes you try to divert attention from you players, so that’s going to happen," he said. "But also understanding that I don’t want to just let it rip, especially language-wise. My kids look at me funny, and you do have a responsibility."
Boone added that "some of the foul language, I’m not real proud of."
Yankees players praised Boone for stepping in, with slugger Luke Voit saying "we appreciate it, and we are a bunch of savages." The outburst was also widely celebrated by Yankees fans.
Miller was umpiring just his fifth big league game behind the plate. Boone said he was impressed by Miller’s poise through the ordeal.
"Brennan yesterday I thought certainly handled the situation with a lot more class than I did, but also I thought turned in a really good game," Boone said. "I respect the job they have to do."