BOSTON – Jim Leyland watched Boston score three times to take the lead and then couldn't hold back anymore. He argued with the umpires until they tossed him from the game, then erupted in the visitor's clubhouse after it was over.
"There shouldn't have been a second-inning rally," the Tigers manager said, his voice rising, after the Red Sox beat Detroit 7-4 on Monday. "There were three outs. I've been in the game a long time. ... You guys need to write something and hold people accountable."
With two outs and a runner on second, Boston's Mike Aviles swung at what would have been strike three. It was ruled a foul tip by plate umpire Jeff Nelson, and on appeal to first base ump Bill Welke the ball was determined to hit the dirt before catcher Gerald Laird could glove it.
Replays appeared to show a clean swing and miss by Aviles, and Laird clearly caught the ball before it could hit the ground, meaning Aviles should have been out.
Aviles then lined an RBI single to center. Daniel Nava doubled him home and scored on Pedroia's single to make it 4-1 before Adrian Gonzales hit an inning-ending groundout to first base.
Leyland came out to argue with third-base umpire Tim Tschida, joining an already angry Lamont. The manager had retreated to the dugout but was apparently still yelling at the crew when first-base umpire Bill Welke tossed him.
After making a "Who, me?" expression, Leyland came back onto the field to argue some more.
In the visiting manager's office afterward, Leyland asked reporters, "Was that a ridiculous call? Then write that it was a ridiculous ... call!"
"I'm not going to sit here and rip umpires," Leyland said, alternating between enraged and merely agitated. "I'm the most protective person in the world of umpires. I protect them more than anybody in the game."
Felix Doubront pitched six innings of four-hit ball, Ryan Sweeney had three hits and Jarrod Saltalamacchia homered for Boston. The victory was tainted by an injury to 2008 AL MVP Dustin Pedroia, who left in the fifth inning with a jammed right thumb.
Doubront (5-2) gave up home runs to Gerald Laird and Delmon Young and just a pair of singles. He struck out six and walked one.
Jhonny Peralta hit a two-run homer in the ninth, and Doug Fister (0-3) allowed six runs and 11 hits in five-plus innings.
Boston added one more in the third on Saltalamacchia's homer, then solo runs on Will Middlebrooks' infield single in the sixth and Aviles' RBI double in the eighth.
Laird had two hits for the Tigers.
NOTES: The Red Sox honored former right fielder Trot Nixon before the game for his contributions to the 2004 team that ended the franchise's 86-year championship drought. Nixon was presented with a No. 7 insert from the manual scoreboard and a mounted pine tar-stained helmet like the one he used to wear. ... Pedroia was hurt diving for Danny Worth's grounder at the end of the fifth inning. He was replaced by Nick Punto. .. Sweeney was activated from the DL before the game and OF Che-Hsuan Lin was optioned to Triple-A Pawtucket. ... Lloyd McClendon managed the rest of the game. ... It was Leyland's third ejection of the year.