Mills: No ill intent on Lopez pitch that struck Ramirez
Tempers flared in the seventh inning of the Marlins’ 5-3 win over the Astros on Wednesday when Houston reliever Wilton Lopez hit Hanley Ramirez with a pitch. Ramirez glared at Lopez and was escorted to first base by an umpire in an effort to keep the peace.
Lopez, who flashed the Marlins’ ’ lo viste sign – which is two fingers forming a sideways “V” over one eye – as he left the mound when manager Brad Mills pulled him from the game, wasn’t available to talk. Mills said the hit by pitch wasn’t intentional.
“There’s no way we’re trying to hit him there,” he said. “A ball just got up and away from him. Look at how many pitchers we went through already. We don’t want to take a chance of going through absolutely everybody. That was just a ball that he opened up on it and the ball rode up and there was absolutely no intent.”
Still, the Astros weren’t pleased at the gesturing of Ramirez and some of his teammates when the teams met last month in Miami.
“Very mature,” Marlins manager Ozzie Guillen said sarcastically when asked about the incident. “He’s lucky I wasn’t Hanley. I would have chased his [rear] all the way to Puerto Rico.”
Warnings were issued to both benches, but the remainder of the game was played without incident.
“That’s just part of the game,” Guillen said. “He’s a kid. It’s no big deal. The umpires controlled that situation very well. I don’t have any problem with that. You’re just a kid and the emotions get to you. That happened and I don’t have a problem with that.”