“I would like to address my actions on May 4th involving Madison Bumgarner,” Bellino said in a statement to ESPN’s Jesse Rogers. “When I began my MLB career almost 15 years ago, I received some good advice. I was told to umpire every game as if my children were sitting in the front row. I fell short of those expectations this week. While I can’t go back and change what happened, I take full accountability. I will learn from this incident, and I sincerely apologize.”
Bellino, the first-base umpire, ejected Bumgarner after the end of the first inning and during a foreign-substance check. Bumgarner was not tossed for violating Major League Baseball’s grip-enhancing substance rules, which would’ve triggered a 10-game suspension. Rather, Bumgarner’s ejection stemmed from words exchanged between the pitcher and Bellino, who incited the spat by staring at the pitcher’s face while slowly checking his hand.
Here’s video of the incident.
“I know why I got thrown out, yes,” Bumgarner said after the game. “I don’t know if I can say anything that would make the situation better, so what I’m gonna say is I’m extremely proud of our team coming back and winning today because I put us in a big hole there. Obviously you didn’t go into the game with the intention of throwing one inning, so for them to be able to fight and everyone picked me up today, for that to happen that’s pretty incredible. Very proud.”
Rogers noted in a tweet that Bellino was punished by the league, but he’s working this weekend as part of the umpiring staff for the series between the Detroit Tigers and the Houston Astros. As such, Bellino was likely only fined.