From Ramona Shelburne of

Major League Baseball is looking into photographs that show Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder Andre Ethier making an obscene gesture at a photographer before Monday’s game against the Milwaukee Brewers at Dodger Stadium.

“We are aware of the pictures and will talk to the appropriate people about them,” MLB spokesman Pat Courtney wrote in an e-mail.

The incident — in which Ethier was snapped flipping his middle fingers at a photographer — occurred during the Dodgers’ batting practice at approximately 4:45 p.m. PT on Wednesday, before the stadium was opened to the general public.

Ethier said Thursday that he had been contacted by the league and had already discussed the matter with Dodgers manager Don Mattingly. He had yet to receive any indication of whether he’d be disciplined by either the league or the team.

The incident occurred, Ethier said, when he repeatedly asked a photographer standing behind the batting cage whether he was finished taking pictures of him because it was interrupting his preparations for the game.

“I just got kind of annoyed, so to that extent I guess I slipped up and that temper you guys like to write about got ahead of me,” Ethier said. “I didn’t use my head or use the best judgment in that situation. Sometimes you make a mistake and it’s unfortunate.”

Ethier denied the initial report, published on, in which a source claimed he used profanity with the photographer and was loud enough for children standing nearby to hear him. …

Steve Dilbeck of the Times was less than impressed with Ethier’s contrition, or at least his sense of when a joke has gone on too long.