Mattingly ejected after arguing strike zone

Mattingly ejected after arguing strike zone

ST. LOUIS -- Don Mattingly has made a habit of hitting the showers early this month. The Dodgers manager was ejected in the seventh inning of his team's 3-0 loss to St. Louis at Busch Stadium on Friday night for arguing about the strike zone with home-plate umpire Mike Winters. Mattingly has been tossed from three games this month.

Los Angeles catcher A.J. Ellis followed his lead and was tossed in the bottom half of the inning for the words he said when Cardinals third baseman Matt Carpenter walked on five pitches.

Mattingly and Ellis said after the game that Winters commented to Ellis on how he was "presenting" pitches.

"Just an accumulation that reached a boiling point, and some things were said that pushed me over the edge and kind of invoked a reaction," Ellis said. "Never good to leave your team on the field, but I felt like I had to stand up for my team and my pitchers at that point."

Ellis could not recall being ejected from another game in his baseball career -- amateur years included.

"There are people in blogs and websites that can critique my framing," Ellis said. "But I'm not going to take it from an umpire because it's not their job to do that. Their job is to call balls and strikes through a strike zone."

After back-to-back singles from Adrian Gonzalez and Justin Turner to start the seventh, Winters rang up Andre Ethier, who watched a low fastball from St. Louis starting pitcher John Lackey and became the fourth Dodger to strike out looking against the veteran right-hander.

Mattingly emerged from the dugout to protest and was tossed.

"It's not worth talking about," Mattingly said. "That's just part of it. You never win with that argument. At the end of the day, it's just wasting your time."

Mattingly was tossed from a game in Los Angeles on May 13 for arguing a call that was not overturned following his decision to challenge it. On May 4 he was ejected for arguing a balk call on Clayton Kershaw.

Lackey took issue with the strike zone in the third, but he ultimately found more favor with Winters than Dodgers starter Mike Bolsinger, who struck out one hitter looking in his six innings.

Asked if it seemed Lackey got more favorable calls, Mattingly kept his response brief.

"It's not worth talking about," he said.

David Cobb is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.