Blue Jay throws helmet, hits umpire
Brett Lawrie of the Toronto Blue Jays throws his batting helmet to protest a third strike call Tuesday night.
May 16th, 2012
11:32 AM ET

Blue Jay throws helmet, hits umpire

Toronto Blue Jays third baseman Brett Lawrie is likely facing a suspension after throwing his helmet in anger and hitting home plate umpire Bill Miller in Toronto Tuesday night.

With a count of three balls and one strike in the bottom of the ninth, Lawrie took back-to-back pitches from Tampa Bay Rays closer Fernando Rodney. Miller called both strikes, sending Lawrie back to the dugout.

Trouble was, when the third strike was called, Lawrie had already taken two steps toward first base, thinking he had drawn a walk. He spun around, took two steps back in the direction of the umpire and threw his batting helmet to the ground. It bounced up and struck Miller.

Lawrie was promptly ejected from the game for the outburst, but is likely to face a further suspension and/or fine because the helmet struck Miller.

I've never, ever, done anything to go at an umpire before in my life, and I didn't mean to tonight. I apologize for that," Lawrie said after the game, according to  "It just kind of took an unlucky bounce and I think it got him, so my apologies for that."

The Blue Jays lost to the Rays 4-3. Major League Baseball has made no announcement yet as to how long they'll lose Lawrie's services.

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Filed under: Baseball • Sports
soundoff (162 Responses)
  1. Jack Skellington

    Angry bird.

    May 16, 2012 at 3:37 pm | Report abuse |
  2. athos

    I blame Angry Birds.

    May 16, 2012 at 3:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jack

      As in angry Blue Jays? Clever.... 😉

      May 16, 2012 at 3:55 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Rex Riley

    Roid rage, catch it!

    May 16, 2012 at 3:43 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Amused1944

    My sons outgrew these tantrums by age of three. He gets paid as a 'professional athlete', he should behave like one.

    May 16, 2012 at 3:46 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Jack

    Among the reasons I dislike pro sports:
    – The players are spoiled, over paid, primadonna's.
    – The umpires are poorly trained, biased, and have been found to be 'on the take' more than once. (Remember the NBA official, Denehee (sp?) who was fixing playoff games – including a famous game 7 between Lakers and Kings? He *admitted* fixing this and other games throughout several seasons and playoffs – and has said that corruption is rampant. Why watch a game that is rigged??

    May 16, 2012 at 3:48 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Knucklehead

    That was no strike...

    May 16, 2012 at 3:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jack

      Yeah – missed the strike zone by a foot or more.

      May 16, 2012 at 3:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • Al

      Ball 4 easy.

      May 16, 2012 at 4:03 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Goose66

    The rules of the game need to be changed. The umpires should be in plexiglass enclosures that don't allow the players to harm them and then just have to take the verbal abuse of the players, coach, and fans. We can't expect for professional athletes to behave in a civil fashion when we put these uneductated thugs on pedestals and pay them millions for God given talents.

    May 16, 2012 at 3:53 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Roger

    From the video you looked angry, you charged toward him like you were going to assault him and by throwing your helmet at him it is assault. In real life you could be charged if your manager didn't pull you off. You should be suspended, drug tested and go to anger management.

    May 16, 2012 at 3:54 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Chuck B.

    Lifetime Suspension

    May 16, 2012 at 3:54 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Doug

    Bad call, maybe. Fixed game, give me a break.

    May 16, 2012 at 3:56 pm | Report abuse |
  11. brian

    no doubt, mutt romney had something to do with it

    May 16, 2012 at 3:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • taz111111111

      it was obama's fault

      May 16, 2012 at 4:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • JoeB

      Blame it on Bush!

      May 16, 2012 at 4:34 pm | Report abuse |
  12. BinaryTruth

    CNN, can you guess the word Brett Lawrie is saying in the photograph?

    May 16, 2012 at 4:00 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Skipper Sam

    The umpire probally called strike three after the batter showboated on strike 2

    Exactly how many pitches did this guy watch go by did he swing at all ?

    Count was 3-1 so he at least did not swing at 5 pitches.

    May 16, 2012 at 4:01 pm | Report abuse |
  14. mike

    those last two strike calls were really, really bad though. i mean, the first of the contested calls was further out from the strike zone than a called ball on the first pitch of the at bat. the second was way high and a little inside. just horrible officiating. that ump deserved it – from the helmet bouncing off the ground then his hip to the beers fans threw at him as he left the field. the mlb should fine him for those calls, he needs to be held accountable.

    May 16, 2012 at 4:07 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Bill

    Threw it on the ground!!!!

    May 16, 2012 at 4:14 pm | Report abuse |
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