The Yankees lost more than the game in the bottom of the eighth against the Angels when Shawn Kelley, Matt Thornton and Preston Claiborne combined to allow six walks, the final five in a row after two were out, and forced home three runs. The Angels didn't have a hit in the inning and and still scored three runs for the 4-1 victory.
But even before that, the wild inning featured an explosive argument between Joe Girardi and plate umpire Laz Diaz regarding a called strike to Brett Gardner that got the manager tossed.
With the bases loaded after singles by Kelly Johnson, Brian Roberts and Ichiro Suzuki, Weaver's 1-and-0 pitch to Gardner looked borderline. Diaz punched his arm forward, signaling a strike and upsetting Gardner. "I thought it was low,'' the Yankee said afterward, "but I'm not going to make excuses.''
But it didn't sit well with Girardi. "It's the biggest pitch of the night to that point,'' he said.
Girardi yelled at Diaz from the bench and was promptly and emphatically tossed by Diaz.
Girardi sprinted from the dugout and engaged in a vein-popping, expletive-filled argument, including a cap spike, with the former Marine Corps reservist Diaz.
Girardi said that earlier in the game, Diaz "gave me the Mutombo'' finger wag when he complained about a pitch, part of what set him off in the eighth. "I'm not a kid. I don't need to be scolded,'' he said.