So, this happened. This weekends series against the Cardinals was a hit-by-pitch marathon. Now, I'm not saying it was all purposeful, but some of it was reckless. As Jerry Hairston Jr. mentioned on twitter, the Cardinals have reputation for hitting batters. They want to intimidate by throwing up-'n-in, but they need (as Clayton Kershaw said) to have a better idea about where the ball's going. Obviously, that's something they lack.
Kershaw, in retaliation, threw an obvious purpose pitch against the buttocks of Matt Holliday. He didn't throw anything dangerous. It wasn't anywhere near the guys face. The ball had the luxury of landing on the part of the body that would do the least damage, so it didn't hurt. No x-rays were needed. The pitch was just a message that their pitchers need to get their ship in order... And, you know what? I don't have a problem with that.
Maybe it's the hockey fan in me, but I do believe there is a time and place for purpose pitches to get a message across. This game is such that a reckless play can get someone really hurt, and if a player doesn't stay cognizant of that then I feel it's important for the opposition to remind them. That's what Kershaw did. He is just politely reminding them to be more conscious of what they are doing. If you want to throw up-'n-in then you better have the ability to do so. Heck, if this was hockey there'd be a few hard checks, a couple slashes to the skate or a fight instead. So, the Cardinals should feel lucky.
BTW, the photo above is of Matt Holliday jawing with AJ Ellis after being plunked in the rear-end, via Jon SooHoo/LA Dodgers 2014. That baby should just stop whining. He got off easy.
- The Cardinals must hate Hanley Ramirez. What did he ever do to you? As you likely know Hanley was hit twice by the Cardinals last night; once on his left hand. He eventually left the game and had x-rays. LA Times reporter Dylan Hernandez let us know on twitter that they were negative, so he should be ready to play tomorrow against the Pirates. Hanley had this to say on twitter:
Stuff happens. Let's keep on, there's a title to chase. Thank you all for your wishes and prayers.
— Hanley Ramirez (@HanleyRamirez) July 21, 2014
- Via Ron Cervenka at Think Blue LA, "Don Drysdale is smiling down on Clayton Kershaw."
Dodgers ace and two-time Cy Young Award winner Clayton Kershaw had seen enough. It wasn’t that Ramirez was hit by Martinez’s pitch, it was that the pitch just missed Hanley’s head. Reminiscent of the good ol’ Don Drysdale days, Kershaw hit leadoff hitter Matt Holliday “on the wallet”, as Dodgers Hall of Fame broadcaster Vin Scully would have said if he were calling the game.
- Via Kim Tae-Jong at Korea Times, "Farewell for Park Chan-Ho." Park was honored at the Korean Baseball League All-Star Game this weekend.
- As Orel at Sons of Steve Garvey notes, Don Mattingly prefers Joc Pederson in centerfield.
Don Mattingly prefers Joc Pederson in center field, but he’s not yet on the active roster. In Pederson’s favor, there’s little doubt that he’s the best defensive option. Some within the organization worry about his minor league strikeout rate, and believe he’ll benefit from further seasoning. If Mattingly gets his way, the Dodgers outfield will become even more crowded, further increasing the likelihood of a trade.
- Via Justin Perline at Beyond the Boxscore, "How productive can Joc Pederson be?"
- Via Alex Halsted at MLB.com, "Crawford joins Holliday in AFL (Arizona Fall League) Hall of Fame."
- The A's 1989 reunion included a nice tribute to Bob Welch. Via Daniel Brown at the San Jose Mercury News, "1989 Oakland A's get to celebrate."
The last act by the former players in attendance was for each to drop a yellow rose at the pitcher's mound, where a large No. 35 had been etched into the dirt. That was Bob Welch's number. The popular starting pitcher died June 9 at age 57.
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